Indonesia secures rice import commitments from India, Thailand

JAKARTA (Reuters) – Indonesia’s PResident Joko Widodo said on Friday his government has secured rice import commitments from India and Thailand to shore up supply for 2024.

He said the country’s food procurement agency Bulog has signed an initial deal for 1 million metric tons from India, while from Thailand, Indonesia has secured a commitment for 2 million tons.

Jokowi, as the president is known, said while Indonesia’s headline inflation is low, he remains concerned about food prices and imports would help secure supply.

“I am still worried when it comes to food commodities. The super El Nino this year brought our rice production down, and in 2024 we predict that it will not return to normal levels yet,” he told an economic outlook event in Jakarta.

Jokowi said he met with Thai Prime Minister Srettha Thavisin during a meeting last week of Japanese and Southeast Asian leaders in Japan and sought rice imports from Thailand.

(Reporting by Fransiska Nangoy; Editing by Kanupriya Kapoor)