Thailand to use natural rubber in sports tracks
Bangkok: Thailand, the world`s largest rubber producer, plans to use natural rubber in construction of running tracks and field sports surfaces at over 700 stadiums to help rubber farmers hit by falling prices.
Sport Authority of Thailand (SAT) has been assigned by the Sport and Tourism Ministry to prepare plans for maximising the utilisation of natural rubber to help rubber farmers suffering from low prices for their product, SAT deputy governor Sakon Wannphong said.
The farmers in the country have been demanding subsidies to offset losses from falling world rubber prices.
The authority will buy natural rubber in large amounts to use it in construction of tracks and fields, Bangkok Post reported on Monday.
Under the terms of reference, private companies who win the bidding to build the tracks and fields have to pay the SAT around one million baht (around USD 32,000) for each stadium as the cost of the rubber. With this projection, the authority expects to earn over USD 22 million from this project.
If the project is approved, the authority has to consult the Department of Physical Education, Education Ministry and Interior Ministry, which supervise local sport stadiums across the country.
Thailand is the world`s largest producer and exporter of natural rubber, accounting for about 34 per cent of the global supply.