The government has decided to procure around 350,000 tonnes of Aman rice locally, to increase the stock of food grains for ensuring the country’s food security.
The Food Planning and Monitoring Committee (FPMC) under the food ministry reached the decision at one of its meetings on Tuesday.
Chief of the Committee, Food Minister Abdur Razzaque chaired the meeting while other members of the committee, Finance Minister AMA Muhith, Agriculture Minister Motia Chowdhury, Food Secretary Mushfeka Iqfat and Director General of the Directorate General of Food, Ahammad Hossain Khan were also present.
After the meeting, the food minister told the media that the government has made a decision to procure Aman rice locally to increase the food stock of the country while ensuring a reasonable price for farmers.
However, the committee could not decide on fixing the price of rice as it has gone up recently because of the repeated nationwide shutdowns, called by the opposition, and some other reasons.
“We have decided to wait on fixing the price in order to observe the market and for the political situation to become stable,” he said.
“A meeting will be called within the next 15 days to fix the price of rice, considering the production cost of Aman rice this season. But, it will not be less than TK29 per kg as the production cost of rice was TK25.42 per kg this season,” the minister said.
He said food grain stock in the country now stood around 1.1 million tonnes, which was 1.5million tonnes in the previous year. As the stock has reduced this year, the government has decided to initiate the procurement so that the country does not face a food crisis.
The target of Aman production this year has been set to 13.2million tonnes.
Razzaque also said the government has decided to allocate money instead of food grains in the “Food for Work” programme under the disaster management and relief ministry. It would also help maintain the country’s food stock.