There will be enough supply of government subsidized rice in the market next year.
Agriculture Secretary Emmanuel Piñol said that this is the assurance made by the National Food Authority (NFA) saying that there will be no repeat of this year’s mistake when the NFA rice stocks sold at P27 per kilo in the market were depleted.
The depletion, Piñol explained, was because of the delayed importation resulting in speculation which sent rice prices soaring.
Piñol disclosed that the NFA has established a stock inventory of 750,000-metric tons of imported rice which will ensure an 8-month supply of government subsidized rice at 10 per cent market participation.
“Added to the P7-B worth of palay which will be procured by the NFA from local farmers, the NFA has given the assurance that there will be enough supply of government subsidized rice in the market next year,” Piñol said.
He added that NFA Acting Administrator Tomas Escarez has reported that the approval by the NFA Council of the importation before the end of the year has assured that the market will not see a repeat of what happened earlier this year.
Piñol also said that the 750,000-metric tons of imported rice will be sold at P27 per kilo while the NFA will seek guidance on the selling price of the locally procured paddy rice since this will be bought at P17 per kilo plus P3.70 per kilo incentive.
“Early this year, prices of commercial rice rose to unprecedented levels after NFA rice stalls ran out of stocks sold at P27. It resulted from the disagreement between the NFA Council and the NFA on what mode of importation to use in buying the imported rice,” Piñol claimed.
It would be recalled that President Duterte had to step in and talked to rice traders to help stabilize the prices in the market while directing the NFA to import the rice using the fastest mode.