Asia Pacific Food Situation Update - January 2013

(Extract)

Little movement in domestic prices

Overall, domestic prices in countries monitored in the Asia-Pacific region registered no significant changes in December. The largest movement was a 4 percent rise in meat prices in China, despite international meat prices remaining almost unchanged.

According to the FAO Price Update released in early January, international rice prices averaged lower in 2012 than in 2011, confirming the easing of market conditions observed during 2012. Similarly, in December 2012 FAO’s All Rice Price Index fell by 2.6 percent on expectations of good harvests and falling quotations in international markets. This influenced the price of rice from most originating countries, especially from Viet Nam and Pakistan. Nominal retail rice prices for Bangladesh, Cambodia, China, India, Indonesia, Myanmar, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Thailand and Viet Nam remained relatively stable in December, with the largest movement being a 3 percent drop in Myanmar.

International wheat prices showed minor changes over the past month resulting from low trading activity. Early indications for winter wheat crops planted in the northern hemisphere are mixed, and somewhat less promising than one month ago, according to the latest FAO Cereal Supply and Demand Brief. Nominal retail wheat prices for Afghanistan, Bangladesh, China, Pakistan and Sri Lanka were largely stable during the month of December, however, the price of wheat flour rose by 2 percent in Pakistan.