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Basic needs prices in Indonesia skyrocket due to weather anomaly

07-15-2010 15:41 BJT

JAKARTA, July 15 (Xinhua) -- Various basic needs prices in Indonesia are skyrocketing in the last few weeks due to weather anomaly that damaged crops, and analysts said this increase will go further ahead of Islamic festivities of the Fasting Month and Eid-el-Fitr in August and September.

Vegetables and meat prices are rising about 50-200 percent across the nation. Price of chilly rose 200 percent compared to normal price, the highest increase compared to other vegetables. Hendri Saparini, managing director of Econit Advisory Group, a leading economic think-tank, told Xinhua in an interview that normally basic needs prices increase occurred ahead of the Islamic festivities, but this year the price hike took place earlier due to weather anomaly. She said that during the festivities, price increase will be spurred by other factors like rising demand, world commodity price hike and increasing power tariff.

"This will put more burdens on the low income class as 70 percent of their expenses are for purchasing food. This will significantly affect them," said Hendri, adding that the middle- high income class will be less affected.

She said that the government should have anticipative and responsive policies against the problem.

"When prices increased several weeks ago the government should already have responded with a stock management. But we know that they did not have any," she said.

Hendri added that now the government has to own a responsive policy by relaxing its measurement on agricultural products purchased from farmers.

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