Jokowi Wants Malaysia Give 20 Percent of Rice Import Quota

Thursday, 23 November 2017 , 12:00:00 WIB -

President Joko Widodo (second right) accompanied by Vice President Jusuf Kalla (right) are seen leading a closed meeting on Asian Games XVII 2018 at the Presidential Palace, Bogor, Jawa Barat, Tuesday (21/11). (ANTARA)

JAKARTA, GRES.NEWS – President Joko Widodo asks Malaysia to give 20 percent of rice import quota for Indonesia. Jokowi delivered the request to the Prime Minister of Malaysia, Najib Razak. "Indonesia hopes Malaysia could allocate 20 percent of their import quota, rice import quota, for Indonesia, which reaches about 150,000 tons per year," Jokowi said after having a bilateral meeting with Prime Minister Najib at Hotel Hilton Kuching, Sarawak, Malaysia, Wednesday (22/11).

Indonesia has started exporting rice to Malaysia last October 2017 for 25,000 tons. The export is expected to increase every year. Besides rice, regulations on border areas become one of the issues discussed in the meeting.

"Indonesia hopes the completed draft Border Crossing Agreement to be discussed so it could be signed immediately. So does the Border Trade Agreement," Jokowi said.

Jokowi and Najib agree to strengthen their partnership on palm oil by establishing the Council of Palm Oil Producing Countries (COPC). "We have to unite in fighting against black campaign on palm oil," Jokowi said.

The second issue that was discussed at the meeting is the protection for Indonesian nationals who live and work in Malaysia. It becomes important as protecting Indonesian nationals is the Indonesian government’s priority. I have asked Prime Minister Najib to pay attention to the rights for education for Indonesian migrant workers’ children, Jokowi stated.

Previously, Agriculture Minister Amran Sulaiman had a work visit to Thunggal Bakti Village, Kembayan District, Sanggau Regency, Kalimantan Barat, Friday (20/10), and harvested rice crops with the locals and launched the export of rice produced by Sanggau Regency to Sarawak Malaysia through Entikong border area.

"Today, Sanggau has a surplus of 50,000 tons of rice, Kalimantan Barat has a surplus of 350,000 tons. We send the rice to neighboring countries. There’s a request for 140,000 tons of rice. Today is the first export," Amran said.

INPARI 33 medium rice are exported as the first introduction to Malaysia. There are 25 tons of rice that will be shipped to Malaysia. The official export will start in 2018.

Amran also checks the quality of rice in the region. He said the agriculture field in the region is free from insect pests. "We have to kill insect pests, don’t ignore it. So the quality becomes good," Amran said. (dtc/mag)