Minister asks regions to be vigilant against El Nino impact – ANTARA News

Minister asks regions to be vigilant against El Nino impact – RMOL News –

It (the fire) is what we need to be careful of.

Jakarta (RMOL) – Home Affairs Minister Muhammad Tito Karnavian has urged local governments to remain vigilant against the El Nino phenomenon, which could cause drought and reduce the sources of available clean water, thereby affecting regional inflation rates.

He made the remarks during a Coordination Meeting on Regional Inflation Control at the Home Affairs Ministry’s Sasana Bhakti Praja Building, here, on Monday, as per a press release received the same day.

Due to the phenomenon, neighboring country Malaysia is currently witnessing panic buying because people are afraid that they will run out of mineral water products.

“If mineral water, as one of the basic needs, becomes scarce, panic buying will occur. Automatically, with high market demands, the price of the product will jump,” the minister noted.

Later, the surge in commodity prices would indirectly trigger an increase in the inflation rate, he added.

Hence, he emphasized that regional governments need to stay vigilant against the El Nino phenomenon, especially governments in eastern Sumatra, such as in the provinces of Riau and Jambi, since the areas are prone to land and forest fires.

“It (fire) is what we need to be careful of. I think the National Disaster Mitigation Agency (BNPB), the military, the police, and the local governments have been aware of it and are already working to prepare (mitigation attempts),” Karnavian added.

Apart from the fires, he also highlighted the impact of El Nino on the agriculture sector since it can cause drought and hamper harvest activities.

He then urged all local governments to begin identifying the impacts that could potentially occur due to the phenomenon.

After mapping the potential problems, regional governments are expected to make interventions to ensure that the impact of El Nino does not disrupt agriculture and trade activities.

In addition, the minister asked regional governments to quickly prepare strategies to meet food demands in their respective regions.

The Meteorology, Climatology, and Geophysics Agency (BMKG) has forecast an El Nino this year around June, which could become more intense by August.

Earlier, the National Food Agency (Bapanas) also urged regional governments to ensure that they have adequate stocks of strategic food commodities as an anticipatory measure against the El Nino phenomenon. 


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