PUTRAJAYA, Oct 27 — Budget 2022 should focus on the padi and rice industry for the country to achieve self-sufficiency level (SSL) of more than 75 per cent in 2025 to ensure food security for the people.

Agriculture and Food Industries Ministry (MAFI) director-general Azman Mahmood said this included on efforts to increase the input and output subsidies for the 300,000 farmers.

He said input subsidies, like fertilisers and pesticides for hill padi,  and incentives for certified seedling, as well as output subsidies such as the subsidy price scheme of RM360 per metric tonne at rice mills will be able to increase production, as well as the farmers’ income.

“Focus should continue to be given to ensure increase in the national padi production and SSL to reduce the country’s dependence on rice import  and enhance preparedness in facing a food security crisis, he told Bernama recently.

Finance Minister Tengku Datuk Seri Zafrul Tengku Abdul Aziz will table Budget 2022 this Friday (Oct 29) which will emphasise three main areas of focus, namely economic recovery, rebuilding the country’s resilience and catalysing reforms.

Meanwhile, Azman said the correct use of the Rice Check method should be encouraged so that  fertilisers given to farmers are used optimally in increasing the national average yield per hectare to seven tonnes during the 12th Malaysia Plan (12MP)  from the current average yield of 3.5 tonnes to achieve the national rice SSL target.

Rice Check is a guide to manage rice crop according to set targets.


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