Semarang (ANTARA) – Central Java Governor Ganjar Pranowo has asked the central government to reconsider its plan to import 1 million tons of rice as domestic farmers are expected to harvest their paddy soon.
“(The import plan) should be reconsidered carefully as our farmers will soon harvest. The crops of these farmers need to be purchased so that they can generate profits after spending quite a lot on productions costs,” explained Ganjar here on Monday.
He also questioned the urgency of rice imports and asked the government to take the current conditions into account so that farmers do not experience a crisis when they enter the harvest season.
“If a disaster emergency or special rice imports are the main reasons, it’s okay. Or the rice imports are carried out for certain regional needs, that can also be an excuse. But, it must be explained in detail so that the farmers are not shaken when they are going to harvest. Currently, they have entered the harvest season,” he remarked.
The Central Java governor said that, based on the calculations of the Agriculture and Plantation Service (Distanbun), Central Java is expected to harvest a surplus of 1 million tons of rice this season.
“Yes, this year’s harvest season is expected to be a surplus. Based on demand, we may record a surplus of around one million (tons),” he noted.
Earlier, the central government had said it would import 1 million tons of rice at the beginning of this year to maintain national rice stocks.
Of the 1 million tons of imported rice, 500 thousand tons would be allocated to the government’s rice reserves (CBP) and the rest to the National Logistics Agency (Bulog), according to Coordinating Minister for Economic Affairs, Airlangga Hartarto.
The rice stocks need to be maintained as the government will carry out large-scale rice procurement for aid disbursal through the social assistance program during the implementation of community activity restrictions (PPKM) and disasters in several places, which are believed to have threatened the availability of national rice supplies, he explained. (INE)
Source: Antara News