Myanmar - Agriculture



Myanmar is one of the few developing nations that is a net exporter of food, which accounted for 20% of its foreign exchange earnings in 2001. About 15% of the land is under cultivation. Agriculture generated roughly two-thirds of employment and 42% of the recorded GDP in 2000.

Rice, by far the most important agricultural product, in 1999 covered about 5.5 million hectares (13.5 million acres) of land in the fertile Irrawaddy delta region, the lower valleys of the Sittang and Salween rivers, and along the Arakan and Tenasserim coasts. Prior to World War II (1939–45), Myanmar was the world's leading exporter of rice; annual production ranged between 13 million and 14 million tons, of which about three million tons were exported. However, the war caused extensive damage to the economy, and Myanmar did not achieve prewar levels of rice acreage and output until 1964. Rice production totaled 10.77 million tons in 2000/01. Farmers have been instructed by the government to double-crop wet season paddy and triple-crop in areas with year-round access to water. In some areas near the sea, multiple cropping brings saltwater intrusion, high flood risks, and seasonal pest problems. New high-yield varieties of rice have contributed to the increases in recent years, along with the completion of new irrigation systems and flood-control dams in the Irrawaddy delta during the early 1980s.

Other crops in 1999, grown mainly in central Myanmar and the state of Shan, included 5,429,000 tons of sugarcane, 562,000 tons of groundnuts, 303,000 tons of corn, and 210,000 tons of sesame. The use of high-yield varieties of seeds helped to more than triple the output of wheat, corn, and sunflower seeds and to double cotton production during 1976–86. Tobacco and jute are also produced, and rubber is grown on small plantations in the Tenasserim and Irrawaddy delta regions. Myanmar is the world's largest producer of opium and heroin. In 2001, opium poppy production was estimated at 865 tons.

The total amount of land under cultivation declined in the 1970s, but the amount of paddy land increased. The Mu Valley irrigation project, implemented in north-central Myanmar with UNDP aid in the 1970s, irrigated 1.7 million hectares (4.2 million acres) of farmland. With the completion of the Nawin Dam in 1982, about 40,000 hectares (99,000 acres) of new irrigated land in the Prome region, north of Yangon (Rangoon), were added to the cultivated area. With IBRD and Asian Development Bank aid, new rice storage facilities, a system of drainage canals in the heavy-rainfall paddy land of lower Myanmar, and gravity irrigation systems in dry zones were constructed.

User Contributions:

1
phyu
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Dec 23, 2009 @ 6:06 am
Social impacts of Myanmar Agriculture development.
How does agriculture development affect the society/community?
2
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Dec 8, 2010 @ 10:10 am
Social impacts of Myanmar Agriculture development.
How does agriculture development affect the society/community?
3
tarak parikh
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Jul 8, 2012 @ 4:04 am
Which are the agriculture crops grown and exported from myanmar? Please give names of the exporters of agriculture crops.
4
thet oo
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Aug 16, 2012 @ 8:08 am
May i ask one question.I would like to know about north nawin damp.please help me.
5
Your neighborhood Spiderwoman
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Jun 8, 2019 @ 10:22 pm
I would adore to know what happens if there is a drought during the crop season and how does that effect the Economy?

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