Tokyo, Sept. 28 (Jiji Press)–Japan’s agriculture ministry said Tuesday that it has set up a panel to consider establishing a spot market for rice.
The envisaged market is aimed at raising fairness and transparency in the price-setting process so that rice farmers can get an accurate grasp of demand and supply.
The panel is expected to design the market by the end of next March.
The first meeting of the panel, comprising rice farmers, collectors, wholesalers and experts, will be held both in person and online on Wednesday.
The members will discuss how the market should function and who can participate, as well as the method of transaction and the products to be traded.
Rice prices had been set by the now-defunct National Rice Exchange and Price Formation Center until 2011. Prices have been set through direct trading between buyers and sellers since the center disbanded due to a decline in trading volume.
“We need to present price indicators that reflect actual demand and supply so as to contribute to the decisions of farmers and wholesalers,” agriculture minister Kotaro Nogami said at a press conference.