There has been a decision reached at a limited coordination meeting. At the meeting, all relevant ministers agreed to the decision. Bulog only realizes the order or assignmentJakarta (ANTARA) - The government has tasked the State Logistics Agency (Bulog) with importing rice to secure the national stock, which currently stands at 594 thousand tons, Bulog president director Budi Waseso has said.
"There has been a decision reached at a limited coordination meeting. At the meeting, all relevant ministers agreed to the decision. Bulog only realizes the order or assignment," he informed at the parliament building in Jakarta on Wednesday.
At the meeting, Bulog was assigned to secure rice stocks under the Supply Availability and Price Stabilization (KPSH) program or market operation with the aim of intervening in rice prices and fulfilling needs in the event of extraordinary occurrence.
The latest decision mandates Bulog to buy 500 thousand tons of rice from local farmers and import 500 thousand tons of rice in order to secure national stocks.
Since the 500 thousand tons of domestic rice is not available, Bulog has ordered 500 thousand tons of imported rice that can be shipped to Indonesia anytime, he said
Meanwhile, chief of the National Food Board Arief Prasetyo Adi said Bulog's rice stocks are running low and could potentially decline to 300 thousand tons as the rice will be used for market operations spread over one and a half months.
If the rice stocks are running low, the impact will be dangerous because the state will have no food deposits in the event of a natural disaster, he added.
In addition, rice prices will soar in the absence of Bulog's market operations, he noted.
He said rice is a commodity that contributes most to food inflation, which may have an impact on national inflation.
The only solution to the problem is that Bulog must augment rice stocks by buying local rice and importing staple food, he said.
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Translator: Aditya Ramadhan, Suharto
Editor: Azis Kurmala
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