Indonesia, the world’s top raw sugar importer, has issued raw sugar import permits for 240,000 tons, an official at the trade ministry said on Wednesday, as it looks to make up a shortfall in domestic sugarcane supplies.
“The government has issued raw sugar import permit of 240,000 tons for fulfilling idle capacity at local sugar mills during current milling season,” said Bachrul Chairi, director general of foreign trade at the trade ministry.
The three companies awarded the permits are PG Gorontalo, Industri Gula Nusantara and Eka Tunggal Mandiri, he added.
Earlier this year, the Indonesian government cut its estimate for 2013 raw sugar imports by 13 percent to 2.265 million tons.
Southeast Asia’s largest economy limits imports of raw sugar, which it usually gets from Thailand, Brazil or Australia, to protect local farmers and aid domestic sugar mills.