Economy January 19, 2021 | 4:01 pm

Government will continue with the “Safe Basket” plan

The government will continue the “Safe Basket” plan in order to guarantee food for Dominicans, which will represent a relief not only to families but also to small producers.

One of the elements of this plan involves an agreement between the government, the producers and the wholesale and retail markets to guarantee the stability of prices in the products of the basic food basket.

The announcement was made yesterday by the Minister of Economy, Planning, and Development, Miguel Ceara Hatton, at the presentation of the document “Prices of foods for mass consumption in the Dominican Republic and the international scene.”

The second point of the plan establishes that the government will buy from the producers, through the Price Stabilization Institute (Inespre), the products of the basic basket to sell them to consumers through the mobile warehouses that will circulate through the streets of Greater Santo Domingo and the provinces of the country.

The increase in the raw material of agricultural products of high relevance in the international market, such as corn, wheat and soybeans, has increased the price of their derivatives in the local market, he said.

These products, he said, are used both for animal feed and for local manufacturing, which is used in the production of bread, cookies, flour, oils, and pasta.

“Between June and December 2020, the international price of soybeans increased by 39.3%, soybean oil by 35.3%, corn by 33.3%, and wheat by 21.3%,” he said.

He pointed out that this has caused the products directly linked to the prices of these goods to have begun to reflect increases in their prices of up to 15.0%. It indicates that the price of a barrel of oil, from June 2020 to January 2021, shows accumulated increases of 34.5%, which have been translated into increases in the prices of its derivatives traded locally.

He pointed out that in recent weeks the Ministry of Agriculture and Inespre have guaranteed the supply of basic food products of local production at affordable prices for lower-income households through the Bodegas Móviles program, benefiting more than 1.3 million families.