The Rice Subsidy Programme should be abolished as it does not benefit the people and the rice import should be open up to the vendors.
In the a press conference held at the party headquarters yesterday,the state DAP chairman Chong Chieng Jen said that instead the government should open up the import of rice to vendors so that they can sell the rice directly to the consumers based on international market prices,without the need of Bernas (Padiberas National Berhad)
According to statistics from the Finance Ministry, “the government subsidises RM750 for every metric tonne under the programme. In 2012, the government subsidised RM488 million (650,000 metric tonne) and in 2013, the subsidy was RM528 million (700,000 metric tonne). As of May this year, the government gave subsidy of RM7.3 million (9,733.33 metric tonnes),”
“However, the price of RM1.80 per kg is rather high, although the international price for rice of the same quality is only RM1.40 per kg, or RM1,400 per metric tonne. With or without subsidy, the price of 15 per cent broken rice remains at RM1.80 per kg.
If the subsidy of RM750 per tonne would truly benefit consumers, the price of rice in 2012 should have been RM1.25 per kg, and consumers only need to pay RM1.10 per kg in 2013 and RM0.85 in the first five months of this year however they are paying much higher than this.
Chong Chieng Jen said that “The same is happening to sugar, electrical tariff and fuel subsidy; the government spends billions of ringgit for subsidies, which only targets a particular section of people”
As a result, the people are suffering as a result of inflation in the country