Malaysia: No price hike of local rice in July, no rice shortage too

SEMENYIH: The ceiling price of local rice will be maintained at RM2.60 per kg and there will be no increase in July, said Chan Foong Hin.

The Deputy Agriculture and Food Security Minister said his ministry would also ensure adequate local rice supply and refuted claims of a supply shortage.

Consumers, he said, could file complaints with the relevant agencies if shops sold rice above the ceiling price.

“The ministry will continue to monitor and enforce operations to ensure stable rice supply while protecting consumers and farmers,” he said after visiting a rice wholesaler and the Mydin wholesale hypermarket here yesterday.

Meanwhile, Padiberas Nasional Bhd (Bernas) had taken the initiative to increase the volume of imported rice by 30% to meet local demand, he said.

According to the ministry, the current retail price of a 10kg bag of imported rice is between RM28 and RM32.

“While there is no price control on imported rice, the ministry will monitor prices.

“Somehow, due to retailer competition, some imported rice prices are lower than controlled rice prices,” he said.

The ministry’s Padi Industry Development Division director-general, Azman Mahmood, reminded retailers not to make “confusing remarks” about local rice prices rising in July.

He said raising local rice prices would violate the Control of Paddy and Rice Act of 1994 (Act 522).

“Anyone who violates the Act risks having their licence withdrawn. Anyone who misleads the public and causes panic may face prosecution,” he added.

Azman said the country’s self-sufficiency level was at 65%, with only 35% rice imports.

Despite the EL Nino phenomenon and the loss of the Kedah rice harvest, Perak and Pahang’s rice output has increased – therefore, there is no rice shortage in the country, he said.

He said there were one million metric tonnes of domestic rice on hand, which is sufficient for 5.5 months.

Previously, industry players indicated that the price of imported rice would rise due to bad weather and a weakening ringgit.

Source: https://www.thestar.com.my/news/nation/2023/06/29/no-price-hike-of-local-rice-in-july-no-rice-shortage-too