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Gov't blames fertilizer shortage for rice price hike

Jakarta Globe - March 13, 2024

Monique Handa Shafira, Jakarta – Agriculture Minister Amran Sulaiman said on Wednesday that the persistent increase in rice prices has been driven by a shortage of subsidized fertilizers.

The government recently agreed to double the volume of subsidized fertilizers to reach 9.55 million tons for this year. However, farmers in remote areas across Kalimantan, Papua, and Sulawesi still cannot access cheaper fertilizers, disrupting their harvests, Amran said in Jakarta.

"There are three factors behind the price hike: fertilizer shortage, El Nino conditions, and the complicated distribution system," he said.

However, the main culprit behind the disrupted supplies and subsequent price hike is the shortage of fertilizer, the minister said.

Regular rice prices are approaching the Rp 15,000 mark per kilogram, up from around Rp 12,000 last year.

Prices of other commodities such as beef, chicken, eggs, onions, garlic, and chilies are also on the rise, which is a typical trend during Ramadan.

However, the government has predicted that domestic rice supplies will reach 3.5 million tons this month, sufficient to meet national demand until May.

Source: https://jakartaglobe.id/business/govt-blames-fertilizer-shortage-for-rice-price-hik