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Revocation of withholding tax exemption on corn exports causes price downtrend

According to the Myanmar Corn Industrial Association, Myanmar revoked a two per cent withholding tax exemption on corn exports during the new wave of coronavirus, and so the corn price is expected to fall. The withholding tax exemption status for corn exports to Thailand duly expired amid the pandemic. The two per cent WHT had to be paid starting from 1 May. The two per cent WHT was levied on corn exports through the land border. During the pandemic, the tax was temporarily exempted.

At present, the exempt status is revoked. Consequently, the lower commodity price is likely to happen. Myanmar is conveying corns to Thailand through the land border, with a tonne of corn fetching up about 8,000 baht.
Myanmar intends to ship 1 million tonnes of corn to Thailand this year. About 600,000 tonnes of corn have been delivered so far, the association stated. Thailand gives the green light to corn imports through Maesot under zero tariff (with Form-D) between 1 February and 31 August. Thailand has granted tax exemption on corn imports between February and August.

However, Thailand imposed a maximum tax rate of 73 per cent on corn import in order to protect the rights of their growers for the corns are imported during the corn season of Thailand as per the notification of the World Trade Organization regarding corn import of Thailand, a corn exporter said. Myanmar exported 2.2 million tonnes of corns to the external market in the past financial year 2019-2020 with an estimated value of $360 million, the Ministry of Commerce’s data indicated. Corn is cultivated in Shan, Kachin, Kayah and Kayin states and Mandalay, Sagaing and Magway regions. Myanmar has three corn seasons—winter, summer and monsoon. The country yearly produces 2.5-3 million tonnes of corns.

Source: The Global New Light of Myanmar

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