China starts rice imports from Laos, first shipment worth $746 million
The shipment weighed 87.8 tonnes and was valued at $746 million, said the Shenzhen Entry-Exit Inspection And Quarantine Bureau.
China mainly imports rice from Vietnam, Thailand and Pakistan. It recently added Laos to the list. Chinese appetite for grain imports has been growing fast, as the increasingly wealthy population seek more choices of staple food.
As China's biggest port for rice imports, Shenzhen handled over 1 million tonnes of rice imports in 2015, accounting for nearly half of the country's total.
The Shenzhen bureau said it has carried out both on-the-spot inspections and lab tests for pesticide residue and heavy metal pollutants on each batch of goods to ensure the quarantine quality of the imports. ■