Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim has assured that the government is not sitting idle and, instead, will do everything in its power to ease the burden of the people, who have been affected by the current increase in global rice prices.
He said this included the various intervention measures announced by Minister of Agriculture and Cost of Living Datuk Seri Mohamad Sabu today to ease the people’s concern regarding the increase in the price of imported white rice (BPI) and the rise in demand for local white rice (BPT).
“I have held a meeting with him (Mohamad Sabu) at my office to discuss and find solutions regarding the rice situation in the country.
“It is hoped that these measures can help ease the burden they are facing. Insya-Allah,” he wrote in his Facebook post today.
Anwar, who is also the Finance Minister, said the Unity Government is concerned about the current issue, especially when the people want guarantees about the supply of BPT and the price of BPI.
“I am very sensitive to and listen to all the complaints raised by the people following the increase in the price of BPI in the market following the rise in global rice prices,” he said.
According to Anwar, the phenomenon of escalating rice prices is not only happening in Malaysia but also in regional countries following the actions of 19 countries in limiting the export of rice to give priority to their own people.
Earlier, Mohamad told a special press conference that the Prime Minister had agreed to implement four additional intervention measures to overcome the rice supply issue in the country.
These included directing the Federal Agricultural Marketing Authority (FAMA) to increase the distribution of local white rice in rural areas, including sundry shops, with the government bearing the transportation cost for FAMA.
For Sabah and Sarawak, Mohamad said the government agreed to give a subsidy of RM950 per tonne for BPI beginning Oct 5, enabling BPI to be obtained at a retail price of RM31 per 10-kilogramme.
Source: BERNAMA News Agency