Ahsan asks provincial administration to check undue profiteering



Minister for Planning, Development and Special Initiatives Professor Ahsan Iqbal on Wednesday directed provincial administration to strictly monitor the profiteering and take all the associations in the loop to transfer relief to the peoples.

He said this while chairing the meeting of National Price Monitoring Committee (NPMC) to assess the implementation status of the decisions taken in the previous NPMC meeting, said a press release.

Ahsan Iqbal also directed to discourage the undue profiteering by retailers and to take concrete measures in this regard as there were huge gaps in the prices of wholesale and retail markets.

The minister also directed the Provincial governments and Islamabad administration to make concerted efforts to mitigate the profit margins between the wholesale and retail prices of the essential items.

Chief Economist Dr. Nadeem Javaid, Officials from Ministry of Finance, line Ministries, FBR, Trading Corporation of Pakistan, Utility Stores Corporation of Pakistan (USC), Pakistan Agricultural Storage & Services Corporation Limited (PASSCO), and representatives of Provincial governments attended the meeting.

In the light of the recent floods and its impact on staple food commodities including wheat, potatoes, tomatoes and other crops, the minister reviewed the measure taken by the concerned departments and the subsequent impact on the trend in prices of essential items.

Pakistan Bureau of Statistics (PBS) presented the report on Sensitive Price Index (SPI). It was reported that prices of 10 essential items including electricity, tomatoes, LPG Cylinder, Banana, Garlic, Pulse Masoor, Cooking Oil etc had been reduced during the last one week. The report on commodities with increased prices including wheat was also presented.

The estimate taken from various provinces covering 17 cities was also discussed in the meeting. It is to be noted that Sensitive Price Index (SPI) is computed on weekly basis to assess the price movement of essential commodities at shorter interval of time to review prices situation in the country.

Competition Commission of Pakistan submitted analytical review on the profiteering phenomena all over the country.

Ministry of Industries apprised that there was a significant decline in the palm oil prices in the International Market, however, the impact of the sharp decline in international market will be passed on with a lag in the local market.

Minister directed Ministry of Industries to ensure the deceleration in the prices of Ghee/ edible oil by Rs.20 within the next one month.

The meeting was informed that due to floods devastation, the commodities supplies have been drastically reduced impacting the overall price rise. The Minister stressed that the supply of wheat from Laya should have substantive impact on the prices of wheat in Baluchistan.—APP


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