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Help Promote Locally-Produced Rice, Persatuan Berasabah Urged
News From : DagangHalal.com (6/17/2010)

KOTA KINABALU, June 16 (Bernama) -- The Bumiputera Rice Wholesalers Association Sabah and Federal Territory of Labuan (Persatuan Berasabah) has been asked to help promote locally-produced rice aggressively to reduce the dependence on imported rice.

Sabah's Deputy Chief Minister, Datuk Seri Panglima Yahya Hussin, said he was confident the high demand for local rice would encourage the farmers to plant them.

"The production of local rice is still low and we still have to depend on imported rice.

"We do not want this to continue. Therefore, we are striving hard to increase rice production through the cultivation of idle land, introduction of various schemes and assistance to encourage the farmers to plant the crop and increase the yield," he said.

Yahya, who is also Minister of Agriculture and Food Industry Affairs, said this at the launch of the association here Wednesday.

He said wholesalers should grab the opportunity to market local rice and not depend too much on the quotas fixed by the government under the National Rice Programme.

"It should be remembered that the programme will be withdrawn when the time comes, that is when the rice subsidy programme (Subur) is launched," he said.

"So I hope the Bumiputera rice entrepreneurs in the state will continue to grow and make progress in their businesses," he said.

Yahya said the government has introduced the rice subsidy scheme in June 2008 as one of the steps to reduce the burden on low-income group.

He thanked Persatuan Berasabah for helping distribute the rice to the targeted groups in rural and remote areas.


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