Reiterating that the there is enough rice stock in the country, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Wednesday said manipulation by dishonest traders is perhaps the main cause of the surge in rice prices.
“There might be some mechanisms by dishonest businessmen,” she said taking part in the budget discussion in Parliament.
The premier made it clear that there is enough stock of rice in the country. “Currently, we don’t have any scarcity of rice… There’s no chance of any food either.”
She said around 1.88 tons of rice are stockpiled in government silos while the stock in approved mills is 5,440,365 tons. “The stock in non-approved mills and at farmer, hoarder and retailer levels is 5,030,456 tonnes. That means the rice reserve in the country now stands at 10,658,821 tons.”
Hasina, however, admitted that there is a hike in rice prices in recent days. “This might be for rain as the paddy in haor areas has been destroyed.”
She said the government has already reduced the duty from 28% to 10%t for rice import.
The prime minister said the country’s farmers are getting fair prices for their produces.