Malaysia to end subsidies for chicken farmers on Aug 31

PHOTO: Reuters file

KUALA LUMPUR - Malaysia plans to end subsidies for chicken and egg farmers on Aug 31, though it will retain an export ban on poultry until supplies stabilise, the agriculture minister told parliament on Thursday (Aug 4).

Malaysia, which supplies live chickens mainly to neighbouring Singapore and Thailand, in June halted exports in an effort to stabilise output and prices at home, after a global feed shortage triggered by the Russia-Ukraine war disrupted production.

Malaysia now had a slight oversupply of chicken following the export ban, Agriculture and Food Industries Minister Ronald Kiandee said on Monday.

Opposition lawmaker Wong Shu Qi on Thursday criticised the ban, saying it had forced Malaysia's buyers to purchase chicken from other sources.

In response, Kiandee justified the ban, saying it was temporary and that similar protectionist steps had been taken by other countries facing food shortages.

"When conditions are stable - not just oversupply in a few locations, but all across the country - of course, the government will make a decision to allow exports," he said.

The government has approved 1.1 billion ringgit (S$340 million) in subsidies for chicken and egg farmers to help them face a rise in feed costs and the loss of export revenue, he said. 

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