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The Indonesia Government is planning to increase 2015 paddy rice output by about 7% to around 75.2 million tons from around 70 million tons in 2014 despite of a drought-inducing El Nino concerns which may likely to affect rice production in the country, as per report issued by the officials of Agriculture Ministry. Further, it has been stated that Ministry is keen on achieving the target by providing emergency measures to farmers which have been affected by drought.

In this context, the matter was discussed, the ways to deal with the weather pattern to achieve the set target. To increase rice production, it has been planned to support the rice sector with regard to distribute 20,000 irrigation pumps, to support in digging of about 1,000 of tubewells and to make 1,000 reservoirs. Further, the Statistics agency has forecasted in July month, an output of about 75.55 million tons of rice in 2015. Since, dry conditions have damaged about 52,000 hectares of rice land, thus the target has been reduced to about 250,000 – 300,000 tons by the Agriculture Ministry.

As per statement, released by the Indonesia’s President for a “no rice import policy”, however, some analysts stressed the need that the country may have to import some quantity of rice to fill up the gap of shortfall in rice production due to drought. But, the government is taking all measures to achieve the desired output and imports would be the last option. So far, the government did not import any rice in this year.

According to USDA estimates, Indonesia is to produce around 36.3 million tons of rice, basis milled (around 57.17 million tons, basis paddy), and to import around 1.25 million tons of rice in MY 2014-15 (October – September). However, experts are forecasting that imports may reach to about 1.6 million tons.