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Jun 9, 2008

Stop the rice monopoly by Bernas: Yong

malaysiatoday - [...] Yet, when it is time for Bernas to fulfil its obligations, we find that there are shortages of affordable rice in the market. Those brands and types of rice that are available have shot up in prices, hence adding to the profits of Bernas,” he pointed out.

He further noted that although Bernas is a public listed company, its main shareholders are known to be limited to a ‘privileged few’.

“Hence, it is time for the government to dismantle such a monopoly which has not served the interests of the people or else, to revert this monopoly to the government. In the case of Sabah, we should consider the revival of the Padi Board so that the State’s interests are protected in the long term,” he stressed.

He continued that although the prices of rice at the international level are currently at a worrying trend, it is incumbent upon the government to foresee future trends and take pre-emptive actions so that basic commodities such as rice are made available to the people at an affordable price.

“It is for this reason that many other countries have invested heavily in food production. Recent news reports in Sabah say that the State Government is providing 20,000 acres for padi planting.

“Considering that our padi yield is lower coupled with less suitable land, a study in 1997 has considered a much bigger acreage of 100,000 acres to be necessary for Sabah to achieve self-sufficiency in padi production.
... selanjutnya.


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