Mon, 14 Jan 2008
Semarang, C Java (ANTARA News) - The government needs to consider its plan of importing sugar, because such decision would only benefit sugar speculators in the country.

"The government`s decision to import sugar would even cause uncertainties in the life of the growers," Chairman of the Indonesian Sugar Distributors Association (ADGI), Central Java chapter, Bambang Husodo, said in Semarang on Sunday.

If the purpose of the sugar imports is to stabilize the markekt price of the commodity, he said the decicison needs to be considered. But the mechanism would have to be set in such a way as not to harm the interest of the sugarcane, he added.

Actually, Bambang said, he has not object to the government importing the commodity, since local production was still not enough to meet the high demand for the commodity on the market.

"Unless sugar is imported, Indonesia`s need for the commodity, especially in Central Java, cannot be satisfied," he said, adding that supply is much lower than demand, and something needs to be done about this imblance.

He said that Central Java`s sugar output reached only 230,000 to 240,000 tons per year, while actual consumption has reached 360,000 tons per year, leaving a shortage of 130,000 tons per year.

Actually, he said, the 130,000 ton sugar shortage in Central Java could be offset by coverage of sugar from other parts of the country with sugar supply surpluses. There are ways -- other than imports -- to cover the shortage, he said. (*)



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