Jakarta, IO – Trade Minister Zulkifli “Zulhas” Hasan has issued a permit to import 500,000 tons of rice after a limited cabinet meeting chaired by President Joko Widodo.
“The meeting decided that in the food sector, we must beef up Bulog’s rice reserve through import,” he said, reported Detik, Wednesday (7/12).
Zulhas said the rice import quota will be based on the needs and stocks at state logistics agency Bulog’s warehouses.
Asked about the statement from the National Food Agency chief Arief Prasetyo Adi who said that only 200,000 tons of rice will be imported, Zulhas did not contradict it.
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“I signed (permit for) 500,000 tons. Maybe only 200,000 tons are needed. It depends on Bulog,” he said.
Zulhas explained that the rice import is needed as the Agriculture Ministry could not meet the volume needed by Bulog. “Our stocks have depleted,” he pointed out. (rr)