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Effects of High Food Prices on Non-Cash Food Subsidies (BPNT) in Indonesia - Case Study in East Nusa Tenggara

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Assyifa Szami Ilman

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Indonesians living in poverty spend the majority of their income on food on often inadequate food consumption. The Non-Cash Food Subsidy (BPNT), a social program to support low income families with food spending has helped alleviate this burden. However, this paper shows that high food prices will impair the positive impacts of BNPT, based on conducted experiments with mothers in West Sumba and Southwest Sumba districts, East Nusa Tenggara.

Positive nutritional effects of the BPNT program are being reduced by high rice and egg prices in Indonesia. The government should complement the BPNT program with policy reforms that reduce food prices in the country. Price interventions have not kept prices within the set range for these food commodities. We outline two policy recommendations: maintain the BPNT Program & reform food policies that undermine the purpose and effectiveness of the Program.

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