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Philippines to be 97% Self-Sufficient in Rice Next Yr: Minister
Asia Pulse
MANILA, The Philippines is expected to be 97 per cent self-sufficient in rice next year.
This was the fearless conservative forecast of Agriculture Secretary Luis Lorenzo, Jr. who attributed the projected feat to the increasing use of hybrid rice and certified seeds by Filipino farmers, barring bad weather.
"And with God's blessing, we may be 100 per cent self-sufficient by that time," Lorenzo told the media in a briefing in Malacanang.
Lorenzo said that presently, the Philippines is 94 per cent self-sufficient in rice, higher than the 88 per cent self-sufficiency figure in 2000 when the country could produce only 12.39 million metric tons (MT).
As of June 1, the country's total rice stock stood at 2.11 million MT, which is equivalent to an 80-day supply.
Lorenzo also reported rising self-sufficiency levels in corn, due to the grain's importance to the poultry and livestock sectors.
"We are 67 per cent self-sufficient (in corn) today, compared to 60 per cent sufficiency three years ago," he said.
The DA expects to produce 80 per cent of the country's corn requirements by 2004, leaving only 20 per cent for imports, Lorenzo added.
The total corn inventory as of June 1 stood at 184,000 MT.
Lorenzo said that for sugar, the country produces 97 per cent of its needs as output this year is expected to hit 2.13 million MT, the highest in 30 years.
He said sugar self-sufficiency would reach 100 per cent next year.
He expressed confidence that by 2005 the Philippines would be rejoining "the ranks of sugar exporters, a status we used to enjoy two decades ago."
MGR Archive 23.7.2003
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Russia Rapan $ 700
USA Jupiter Rice $630
USA Calrose #1 $830
USA Calrose #1 Paddy $480
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