Indonesian Police raid garlic warehouse in Cilincing

By Stefani Ribka

The National Police have raided a garlic warehouse in Cilincing, North Jakarta, amid allegations of illegal hoarding, Trade Minister Enggartiasto “Enggar” Lukita said Wednesday.

“The police have been tracking data [of the related importer’s purchase and sale] and monitoring their moves. The government is serious when we say we won’t tolerate any more hoarding,” he told reporters during the launch of the food price stabilization movement by State Logistics Agency (Bulog).

Previously, Indonesian Garlic Entrepreneurs Association (APBPI) chairman Piko Nyoto Setiadi emphasized that importers under the association have not been hoarding any garlic, saying, “All of our warehouses are empty now.”

However, APBPI only comprises of around 15 importers and there are many more garlic importers under other associations, he said.

The price of garlic in Jakarta has surged to Rp 70,000 (US$5.26) per kilogram from Rp 40,000 per kilogram in January, shows.

The government has been suspicious of possible hoarding by importers and of illegal imports.

APBPI claims the recent surge in garlic price is a result of the increasing price of the commodity in China. “Traders in China have been holding on to stock to stabilize prices in their local market, leading to prices as high as $2,700 per ton,” Piko explained. (bbn)

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