The European Union may impose tariffs on rice imported from Cambodia and Myanmar for the next three years in order to reduce a surge in imports.
The Commission proposes to set a duty of 175 euros ($200.73) per tonne of rice in the first year, falling to 150 euros in the second and 125 euros in year three.
It follows a “safeguard” investigation which began in March after a request from the government of Italy.
Cambodia and Myanmar benefit from the EU’s “Everything But Arms” scheme. The scheme allows the world’s least developed countries to export most goods to the European Union free of duties.
The Commission found that a significant increase in rice imports had caused economic damage to the rice growing sector in Europe. Rice can be grown in eight southern European countries from Portugal to Bulgaria.
An EU farming group said Cambodia and Myanmar’s exports to the European Union of long-grained Indica rice have increased from 9,000 tonnes in 2012 to 360,000 tonnes in 2017. This has caused a collapse in the wholesale prices of rice.