Global production for 2014/15 is slightly lower than last month as reductions in Egypt, Australia, and Afghanistan more than offset the increase in South Korea. Global trade is higher primarily driven by Thailand. Global stocks are reduced on stronger consumption in India and Vietnam. U.S. production is raised marginally, and trade is unchanged.

Since their peak in 2012/13, stocks in both India and Thailand have declined. Stocks in India are down as the government has released 5 million tons to control rising food prices. Stocks in Thailand are drawn down as the current government actively pursues sales opportunities to reduce stocks, bought under the now-discontinued paddy pledging scheme. The sizable decline in the two countries' stocks is forecast to drive down 2014/15 global stocks to the lowest in 5 years.

SELECTED TRADE CHANGES

• China's 2014 imports are boosted 300,000 tons to 3.8 million on strong purchases mainly from Thailand and Burma. Imports for 2015 are up 300,000 tons to a record 4.0 million.

• Egypt's 2014 exports are cut 200,000 tons to 600,000, while 2015 exports are cut 375,000 tons to 500,000 reflecting a smaller crop in both years.

• Nepal's 2014 imports are up 100,000 tons to 350,000 on larger volumes from India.

• Philippines' 2014 imports are up 200,000 tons to 1.7 million reflecting large purchases from Vietnam and Thailand. Imports for 2015 are raised 100,000 tons to 1.7 million.

• Senegal's 2014 imports are raised 100,000 tons to 1.2 million on large shipments from Thailand. Imports for 2015 are also raised 100,000 tons to 1.2 million.

• South Korea's 2014 imports are cut 115,000 tons to 330,000 on trade trends to date.

• Thailand's 2014 exports are boosted 800,000 tons to 10.3 million on continued strong sales by the government. Exports for 2015 are also raised 800,000 tons to a record 10.8 million