Trade Minister Enggartiasto Lukita told Antara here on Monday that the issuance of Ministerial Regulation no. 30/2017 was to revise the previous regulation, especially on the import of garlic.
"The ministerial regulation no. 30/2017 is the revision of ministerial regulation no. 71/2015, that added garlic on the list of commodities under government import control," he stated.
Under the regulation, import of some horticulture products could only be handled by companies which held Importer Identification Number (API) and state-owned firms with special task from the State Enterprises Minister.
Holder of the General Importer Identification Number (API-U) as well as Producer Importer Identification Number (API-P) should submit their electronic application to the minister.
In addition, they should already have the Import Recommendation of Horticulture Product (RIPH) from the Agriculture Ministry.
"Importers that hold API-U or API-P should have the RIPH," the minister added.
Among the commodities that would be restricted for import are fresh potatoes, onion, garlic, and some fresh vegetables.
Earlier this month, Enggartiasto noted that he would issue a decree to regulate garlic imports and distribution to prevent price fluctuations of the commodity, following a sharp prices increase, while data on its stock was unclear.
According to the government, garlic import is predicted to reach 480 thousand to 500 thousand tons per year, mainly from China, India, the United States, Switzerland, and Malaysia.
Some 99.25 percent of the import originated from China.
Garlic price reached Rp50,680 per kilogram in May, an increase of 31.5 percent from the price of Rp38,554 per kilogram in Jan.
Indonesias garlic import during Jan-Feb was recorded at 60,955 tons at US$70.5 million compared to 77,284 tons at $57.7 million in 2016.
Reported by Vicki Febrianto
EDITED BY INE/a014