Cianjur, West Java (ANTARA) - The Trade Ministry has collected Rp2.5 billion (US$160 thousand) in cash and other forms of donations for earthquake victims in Cianjur District, West Java.

"We have pooled Rp2.5 billion (in cash) and foods worth Rp500 million (US$32 thousand) donated by colleagues at the Trade Ministry," Hasan stated while visiting earthquake victims in Cikamuning Hamlet, Nagrag Village, here Sunday.

During the visit, the minister also symbolically handed over Rp130 million (US$8.320) in donations for some 60 families in the hamlet.

"We also symbolically presented Rp130 million (assistance), while we will present the actual assistance tomorrow because we want to avoid any commotion," he said.

He said the aid packages the ministry donated contain goods that are highly needed by the earthquake victims, including food, blankets, and clothes.

"We have partially assisted foods and blankets which they need most. We also provided rice, corned beef, sugar, medicines, underwear, and women's clothes," the minister noted.

During his visit to Cikamuning, Hasan conversed with earthquake victims who took refuge at open shelters in the village's field. The minister suggested residents report damages in their homes to local authorities for follow-up action.

Besides visiting refugee shelters in Cikamuning, the minister also visited Rawacina and Cikarenyom hamlets. He also visited the Cianjur District Head office.

Moreover, he confirmed that the ministry would organise special market operations to stabilise food prices in the region following the earthquake last Monday (November 21).

"We hope (if the conditions) have improved, and if the (commodity) prices fluctuate or increase, we will organise market operations, God Willing," Hasan said.

The minister said that officials still plan the date and places for running the market operations.

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Translator: Ajat Sudrajat, Nabil Ihsan
Editor: Rahmad Nasution
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