Iran’s quarterly rice imports up 140%
7/22/2013 11:41:06 AM
The country imported 537,000 tons of rice, up 93 percent year on year, ISNA reported.
India, the United Arab Emirates, and Turkey were the main sources of rice exports to Iran.
Meanwhile, the director of the Iranian rice producers association, Jamil Alizadeh Shayeq, said on July 17 that the domestic need to rice is about 500,000 tons. 
Importing such a large amount of rice will certainly make a disorder in the market, he said.
In December 2012, Mehdi Kaboli, an official with the country’s Agricultural Jihad Ministry, said that Iran needs to import 500,000 tons of rice each year.
Iran plans to produce over 2.4 million tons of rice in the current Iranian calendar year, Kaboli added.
Annual rice consumption in Iran stands around 2.8 million tons, so we only need to import less than 500,000 tons of rice this year, he said.
Iran plans to reach self-sufficiency in rice production during the next three years.
According to the Agriculture Jihad Ministry’s plan, Iran was supposed to reach self-sufficiency in the rice production field by the end of the current Iranian calendar year (March 20, 2013), but the officials recently announced the plan needs some more 3 years to be completed, according to ISNA.