NFA picks groups to bring in 100,000 tons rice for Mindanao

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rice imports
AFP

THE NATIONAL FOOD AUTHORITY (NFA) on Thursday chose 21 groups to import a total of 100,000 metric tons of rice for Zamboanga City, Basilan, Sulu and Tawi-Tawi (ZamBaSulTa).

Three private companies bagged 20% of total while 18 farm cooperatives got the remaining 80% in Thursday’s auction, according to a joint statement of NFA and the Land Bank of the Philippines on Friday.

The NFA identified the three private companies as Blue Shark Development and Trading Corp., RAS Bacolod, Inc. and Basulta Traders Corp.

“The auction is under the Minimum Access Volume (MAV) scheme for crop year 2017-2018. Arrival of rice imports is set from October 1 to November 30… This is seen to boost the supply of rice in the area and complement ongoing rice distribution operations,” the statement read.

An intensified government crackdown on rice smuggling in ZamBASulTa in western Mindanao led to an acute shortage of grain in the area.

The NFA will check the requirements of the groups concerned before issuing them certificates of eligibility to import rice by Sept. 25.

All shipments will be subject to a 35% MAV tariff which should be paid in advance with LANDBANK. — Denise A. Valdez