Vice President Jusuf Kalla has hinted that the Indonesian Government would not implement its rice import policy because rice stocks at the warehouses of Bulog, the state-owned logistics company, remain sufficient.
“We have no plan to import rice now, because we do not meet any of the required conditions to do so. The rice stock at Bulog`s warehouses is recorded at 2.2 million tonnes, and the retail price of rice also remains stable,” he said on Monday.
Speaking to journalists after chairing a limited meeting for improving the method of calculating rice production, Jusuf Kalla said one of the conditions for importing rice is whether Bulog`s rice stock had reached less than one million tons.
The second condition was related to the retail price of rice, which increased 10 percent from the price ceilings that the government has previously set, he said, adding that there were no acceptable reasons for importing rice at the moment.
Vice President Jusuf Kalla also revised the data on this year`s targeted production of dry-milled rice grains that the Ministry of Agriculture had set, at 80 million tonnes.
According to the Central Statistics Agency (BPS), by applying the new method of calculating rice production, there would merely be some 56.54 million tonnes of dry-milled rice grains this year, he said.
“Do not forget that, with the production of 56.54 million tonnes of dry-milled rice grains, we still have a surplus. If we say that we have 80 million tonnes of dry-milled rice grains, but we still import, people will laugh at us,” he said.
Agriculture Minister Amran Sulaiman did not attend the meeting, but was represented by Head of the Agriculture Ministry`s Food Security Agency Agung Hendriadi.
The meeting was also attended by Presidential Chief of Staff Moeldoko, Coordinating Economic Minister Darmin Nasution, Agrarian and Spatial Planning Minister Sofyan Djalil, and Head of the Central Statistics Agency Suhariyanto.