Jatiya Party’s Acting Chairman GM Quader has asked the government to reverse its plan to export surplus rice.
Food scarcity may hit Bangladesh during disaster if the government goes ahead with its plan to export rice, the former commerce minister says.
“No matter how much rice is surplus in the country now, it will be a sensitive decision to export rice. The country may have to pay the price in time of disaster,” he told a press conference at the party office in Dhaka on Saturday.
The government was planning to export around 1 million tonnes of surplus Boro rice production after meeting the domestic demand, Agriculture Minister Abdur Razzaque said on May 7.
The agriculture minister did not provide any account of surplus grain in the country. It would be possible to import rice in case of any problem after the export, he said.
Quader on Saturday said government statistics are not always correct.
“You won’t be able to buy rice from the market no matter what price you offer if a famine starts,” he said.
The Jatiya Party is not against rice export, but wants more scrutiny before finalising the decision, Quader said.
“In my views, it will be very much risky to export grain now,” he added.
The opposition leader also demanded government measures to ensure fair price of paddy for farmers.
The demands include procurement of paddy directly from the farmers instead of millers, fixing a standard price of paddy and taking control of private warehouses.