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Abstract

The rice industry is the most important agriculture subsector in Myanmar. However, far lower profits are gained from producing rice in Myanmar compared with those gained in other rice-producing ASEAN countries. This paper analyzes the operational constraints experienced by the different actors in the rice value chain in Myanmar. Both primary and secondary data on the rice value chain in Ayeyarwaddy Region, the main rice-growing area in Myanmar, were collected. The actors in the region suffer from constraints in material input, production, financial, distributional, and institutional. This study examines the actors’ profitability, together with their sociodemographic and operational characteristics, to provide proper policy guidelines to address constraints. The analysis revealed that the value chain in the study area is structurally inefficient, characterized by a large number of actors who face numerous constraints. Diverse policy recommendations are then put forward to improve the rice value chain in the Ayeyarwaddy Region. Stakeholders need to implement projects that would increase the quantity and quality of rice produced, ranging from input quality control to more efficient extension services. Credit and sufficient working capital should also be provided to make infrastructure investments possible at each stage of the value chain in order to improve production and profitability.

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