On 10th April 2013, Thailand’s Ministry of Agriculture held an ASEAN Rubber Day 2013 event at Hilton Phuket Arcadia Resort and Spa. Deputy Minister of Agriculture – Mr.Yuttapong Charasathien presided over the event together with Phuket Vice Governor – Dr Sommai Preechasin. Also in attendance were representatives from the 10 ASEAN countries; Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Philippines, Singapore, Vietnam and Thailand and representatives from the world’s three major rubber buyers, namely China, Japan and India.
Mr. Yuttapong said “As Thailand is about to enter into the ASEAN Economic Community it is committed to bringing the country towards being the center of rubber trade industry in ASEAN. Thailand produces the most rubber in the world. Today, Thailand’s rubber output averages 3.1-3.6 million tons per year and it plays an important role in determining the rates and direction of future rubber market. We must strengthen the Thai farmers and rubber businesses further with added support for market output, and increasing the value of natural rubber. We also need to promote the use of rubber in our country and reduce the export of raw rubber to the international market and increase the use of Thai rubber products in the country.”
“Our goal is to enhance the domestic rubber production by approximately 10 percent and increase the consumption of rubber in the country by up to 46 percent. We need to have the ability to compete with foreigners and can increase the value of exported rubber products from 178,935 million baht in 2008 to 230,000 million baht in 2013. Thus, farmers will have revenue of not less than 15,000 baht per rai per year from their rubber plantations” he added.