Our task is to stabilize (the prices) and provide alternatives for those who need it most.
Jakarta (ANTARA) - The State Logistics Agency (Bulog) has cited the increase in the price of unhusked rice in all production centers as one of the factors behind rice scarcity in several modern retail stores and high rice prices.

"At the producer level, the price of unhusked rice has reached around Rp8 thousand (approximately US$0.51) and in production regions, the rice price has reached around Rp15 thousand (US$0.96)," Bulog President Director Bayu Krisnamurthi informed during a media discussion here on Tuesday.

According to him, in almost all regions of Indonesia, rice is being sold above the retail price ceiling (HET). Currently, in some regions, rice is being sold for around Rp15 thousand to Rp16 thousand (US$1.02) per kilogram.

The government has set the HET for rice at Rp13,900 (US$0.89) per kilogram. Meanwhile, the government's purchasing price (HPP) for unhusked rice has been fixed at Rp5 thousand (US$0.32) per kilogram.

Krisnamurthi also provided information on farmers' unhusked rice and rice prices per kilogram in production centers in Indonesia based on data recorded as of February 12, 2024, including in Indramayu, where unhusked rice price reached Rp7,350 (US$0.47) while premium-quality rice price was recorded at Rp15,400 (US$0.98).

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In Karawang, unhusked rice price reached Rp7,150 (US$0.46), while the price of premium-quality rice touched Rp14,333 (US$0.92). In Banyumas, the prices of unhusked rice and premium-quality rice reached Rp8,500 (US$0.54) and Rp15 thousand, respectively.

Then, in Sragen, unhusked rice price reached Rp8,100 (US$0.52) and premium-quality rice price Rp14,200 (US$0.91).

In Ngawi, the price of unhusked rice touched Rp8,200 (US$0.52), while the price of premium-quality rice stood at Rp15,700 (US$1).

Furthermore, in Sidenreng Rappang, the price of unhusked rice reached Rp7,900 (US$0.51) and premium-quality rice Rp14,050 (US$0.90).

Regarding the scarcity of Food Supply and Price Stabilization (SPHP) rice at several modern retail stores, he said that this has occurred because retailers do not wish to sell rice at prices violating the HET.

"Modern retailers do not have the courage to violate HET. Why? Because it is related to their reputation. Thus, if they get caught and someone takes a photo (for evidence), it will cause problems for modern retailers," he explained.

The Bulog president director said that traditional markets have stocks of rice. However, the prices are high, above the HET.

"Our task is to stabilize (the prices) and provide alternatives for those who need it most," he added.

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Translator: Muhammad Harianto, Raka Adji
Editor: Rahmad Nasution
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