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PH has enough rice stocks – DA chief

THE country has enough stocks of rice despite the temporary closure of several warehouses of the National Food Authority (NFA), Agriculture Secretary Francisco Tiu Laurel Jr. said on Wednesday.

«There are stocks available. It's harvest season, and it will continue until May, so there are enough stocks,» he told reporters.

Tiu Laurel added that 97 NFA warehouses were closed temporarily to give way to an investigation into the alleged improper sale of rice.

Tiu Laurel said that the price of imported rice remains stable at $700 per ton.

«So, we expect that hopefully it will lower by the second half of this year. Since the lingering effects of El Niño are still there, I don't think [prices] will decline as of the moment,» he said.

Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) data showed that NFA stocks decreased annually by 55.3 percent to 46,890 metric tons (MT) as of February 2024, in comparison to 104,790 MT recorded in 2023.

On a monthly basis, the volume of rice stocks has declined by 3.7 percent in comparison to January's 48,680 MT.


The country's overall rice stocks were estimated at 1.51 million MT, representing an annual decrease of 0.8 percent from the 1.52 million MT inventory in the same period of the previous year.

The Agriculture department's monitoring report for April 2 said prices of imported well-milled rice range between P50 and P54 per kilo, while local milled rice is sold from P48 to P55 per kilo.