Jakarta (ANTARA) - State Logistics Agency (Bulog) distributed 100 thousand tons of rice through the Food Supply and Price Stabilization Program (SPHP), or called market operation, in early January 2023 to reduce soaring rice prices in the market.

"We ask the public to not worry because Bulog guarantees that the people's needs for rice will be met at affordable prices, even though there are price increases in the market," President Director of Bulog Budi Waseso stated in Jakarta on Thursday.

He remarked that the increase in the price of rice was caused by the current conditions that had not entered the main harvest season. Thus, the availability of goods in the market is decreasing and causing a slight increase in prices.

In order to maintain price stability, the president had issued directions and instructed all related elements to ensure market operations (SPHP Program), which has been running since 2022, to be intensified again to reduce price fluctuations in the market.

In addition, Bulog issued a policy to import 500 thousand tons of rice as an effort to control the increasing prices of rice. With rice imports and the supply of Government Rice Reserves (CBP) fulfilled, the price of rice in the market will certainly be under control, Waseso remarked.

He emphasized that the arrival of imported rice had brought CBP stocks at Bulog to 683 thousand tons. The additional imported rice can only strengthen national rice reserves until the main harvest season arrives in March 2023.

"This amount is sufficient for distribution until the main harvest session," he stated.

Apart from receiving additional stocks of imported rice, Bulog will also continue and be active in maximizing absorption during the next harvest. Waseso hopes that all CBP stocks this year would be fulfilled from domestic production.

Bulog also continues to coordinate with the central and regional governments to maintain rice prices in stable condition and try to avoid high spikes in prices.

Related news: Govt rice reserve quality good: Bulog
Related news: President Jokowi reminds Bulog to control rice prices

Translator: Kuntum Khaira R, Resinta S
Editor: Rahmad Nasution
Copyright © ANTARA 2023