(Business in Cameroon) - The Cameroonian government should increase its subsidies to SEMRY (Society for the Expansion and Modernization of Rice in Yagoua) to help reduce the price of milled rice in markets. This is one of the suggestions made by Fissou Kouma, the general director of SEMRY, in an interview published this month in Minader infos, the Ministry of Agriculture’s magazine.
“We would like to request improvement of the production tools. We would also like to kindly notify the government about the necessity of increasing the budget allocated for the purchase of paddy rice and the elaboration of a mechanism aimed at helping Semry easily transport its end products to the remote consumption site of Mayo-Danay,” Fissou Kouma said.
“It is worth mentioning that the price of inputs, like artificial fertilizers, is too high for most f the rice producers who can not afford it. So, they strongly demand a state subsidy to balance their operating accounts. This will lead to a drop in paddy rice production costs and ultimately a decrease in the prices of milled rice in markets,” he added.
Semry collaborates with 20,000 rice-growing households or about 160,000 people in Yagoua who derive most of their income from rice production. Every year, the region derives over XAF6 billion from the rice sector.
In addition to rice production, Semry recently entered the processing and marketing sectors. It now buys paddy rice from producers, mills and sells them in markets. It sells 50 kg of its broken rice at XAF16,000 while the long grain rice is XAF20,000 (per 50 kg bag), and XAF18,000 for the twice-broken variety.