The country’s rice self-sufficiency level declined to 93.44 percent from 95.01 percent, the Philippine Statistics Authority said.
According to the PSA, the country’s Import dependency ratio (IDR) of rice increased to 6.56 percent last year from 4.99 percent in 2016.
Rice imports went up by 39 percent to P18 billion in 2017.In terms of volume, shipments soared 46 percent to 888,085 metric tons (MT).
The declining self-sufficiency of rice was due to the reduced share of domestic production to the country’s supply, while the share of rice imports increased.
The country’s rice import dependency will further increase this year after the government approved the procurement of 1.6 million MT of rice.
Palay (unhusked rice) production is seen to reach 18.6 million MT this year, lower than last year’s 19.2 million MT.
The projection is also below earlier targets of 19.4 million MT following the damage brought about by Typhoon Ompong last month.
Agricultural products that showed high dependency on importation were garlic, peanut and mongo, with an IDR of 90 percent, 75 percent and 51 percent, respectively.
For the livestock sector, beef continued to post a higher IDR of 36 percent, carabeef 33 percent and pork 13 percent.
Meanwhile, importation was lesser for coffee, onion, potato and all other fishery products except tuna.