Rice plays a key role in the agricultural sector and occupies a prominent place in the economy of Pakistan.

Pakistan is the world's 11th largest producer of rice, with a share in world rice trade - 8%. Rice exports bring Pakistan up to $ 2 billion per year and has been the second largest export item in 2018.

There are three types of rice varieties cultivated in Pakistan, such as Basmati type, IRRI type and Cold tolerant, bold and short grains. These varieties are area specific depending on environmental conditions.

Pakistani fine rice commonly known as Basmati is world famous and enjoys monopoly in the international market, due to its quality characteristics, strong aroma, slender and long kernel, gelatinization, temperature and high degree of grain elongation on cooking. Pakistan is the main producer of this variety.

Like India, Pakistan exports both high-quality Basmati rice which sells at a premium in high-income markets as well as intermediate and low quality non-aromatic long grain milled rice to developing countries, mostly in East Africa and in South Asia. Kenya is the largest buyer of Pakistani non-Basmati rice.

China is world's major consumer of rice in the world and it imports 30 to 40 percent of its demand from Pakistan.

One of the largest buyers of Basmati rice was Iran, but due to the non-availability of banking channel.

Traditionally, the leading export markets for all Pakistani rice are Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Indonesia, China, Kenya, Tanzania, the United Arab Emirates, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Spain, UK and USA.

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