Thai government reverses rice price cut
BANGKOK (AFP) - Thailand's premier on Tuesday reversed a decision to cut the price it gives farmers for rice, a fortnight after stoking anger from its rural heartlands by announcing a 20 per cent reduction in the fee.
The so-called rice-pledging scheme has dogged the government since its introduction shortly after Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra's election victory in 2011.
Critics say the scheme is a costly sop to her government's rural voters, is riddled with corruption and has caused the commodity's price to surge - knocking the kingdom from its place as the world's top rice exporter.
"The cabinet has endorsed the proposal... to adjust price for rice pledging scheme to 15,000 baht (S$612.60) per ton," she told reporters, restoring the price.