-As Impediment To Reduction in Price of Rice
By Reuben Sei Waylaun
Rice Importers in the country have complained of so many bottlenecks which they said are hampering the full implementation of President George Weah’s request for reduction in the price of the nation’s staple food, rice.
The disclosure was made Thursday following an investigation into why those rice importers haven’t reduced the price of rice since their meeting with President George Weah.
It can be recalled that, recently, some rice importers met with President Weah and promised to reduce the prices of 50kg bag of rice and 25kg bag of rice respectively.
In its report Thursday, the House of Representatives’ committee on commerce, Industry and Trade said that the rice importers want the Liberian Government through the National Port Authority (NPA/APM Terminals), BIVAC International to relax or remove the fees charge.
But following the report and subsequent deliberations, the lawmakers said those rice importers should have taken into consideration all of the bottlenecks before making their public commitment.
Others termed as betrayal the actions on the part of the rice importers and endorsed a motion that will order them to appear before the full plenary next Thursday to explain why they haven’t implemented their commitment to the nation through the Liberian leader.
It can be recalled that President George Manneh Weah acknowledged the favorable responses of rice importers to his request for reduction in the price of the nation’s staple food. The rice importers agreed to reduce the price of a 25kg bag by two United States Dollars while the price of a 50kg bag is reduced by US$4.
The President said: “If government-imposed tax is an issue, you can rest assured that my government is more than ready to grant reasonable adjustments in the tax regime to make the reduction of rice price possible.”
At the end of the negotiations, officials of the Association of Liberian Rice Importers consented to effect a reduction of the price.