NFA changes rice imports tack | Inquirer Business

NFA changes rice imports tack

By: - Reporter / @kocampoINQ
/ 05:10 AM October 25, 2018

After the National Food Authority (NFA) fell short of its goal to bid out the total volume for its rice imports last week, its policymaking body has decided to change its mode of procurement to avoid further delay in the shipments’ arrival.

Agriculture Secretary Emmanuel Piñol, who chairs the NFA Council, said in an interview that the agency had decided to award the remaining 203,000 metric tons (MT) of rice via a government-to-government (G2G) scheme from an open tender scheme.

While considered the fastest way to import rice, G2G procurement is said to be more prone to corruption as contracts are negotiated, rather than awarded through bidding.


NFA’s latest bidding last Friday partially failed due to the agency’s low reference price at $428.18 a ton.


Of the 14 companies that participated, only four were able to meet the agency’s demands.

Prices offered by most companies ranged between $450 and $480 a ton.

In the end, only 43,000 MT of rice were awarded.

“We adopted the G2G option because we wanted to make sure that there would be enough rice stocks… We’re still projecting two or three typhoons by the end of the year. In the face of calamities, we don’t want NFA not being able to provide rice,” Piñol said.

“What is important as of this time is to bring in NFA rice stocks in the soonest possible time to prevent a repeat of what happened in the past,” he added.

Prices of rice in the market are slowly declining, but consumers are still reeling from the rice crisis that hit earlier this year.


Aside from high global oil prices and the additional excise tax imposed on oil under the new TRAIN law, rice prices reached record-levels due to the NFA’s belated decision to import rice amid a dwindling stock.

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TAGS: Agriculture Secretary Emmanuel Piñol, National Food Authority (NFA), rice imports

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