CCP recommends measures to promote efficiency in 10 food commodities’ value chain

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The Competition Commission of Pakistan (CCP) has completed a draft study aimed at addressing market distortions and promoting efficiency and competition in the value chain of ten essential food commodities including onion, edible oil and ghee, potato, poultry, wheat, sugar, milk, rice, tomato, and pulses. These commodities constitute 63% of an average household’s monthly expenditure on food items.

The double-digit inflation in Pakistan since November 2021 prompted the Economic Coordination Committee to capture the food inflation and the CCP was tasked by the National Price Monitoring Committee (NPMC) to look into the reasons of price increase in essential commodities.

The CCP shortlisted 10 major food items from the list of 51 essential commodities in Sensitive Price Index (SPI) for the study, according to a pres release issued here on Saturday.

The CCP has shared the draft study and held consultative sessions with the stakeholders including representatives from the agriculture and food ministries, research institutes and other related departments from Punjab, Sindh, and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.

The CCP Chairperson Rahat Kaunain Hassan and her team including Member Mujtaba Ahmed Lodhi, and other senior officers held threadbare discussions with the stakeholders on the study’s recommendations.

The session with the stakeholders from Balochistan will be held in the upcoming month. After taking stakeholders input, the study will be finalized with consolidated recommendations to the Government of Pakistan to address market distortions and ensure efficiency in the value chain of these commodities.

The above mentioned ten commodities combined showed a 35% increase in price in July 2022 as compared to July 2021. The highest increase in prices of Masoor (92%), Onion (89%), Edible oil (77%) and gram (52%) was observed during the same period.

The study outlines the underlying causes of the price hikes and supply chain issues including the inappropriate policies and regulations distorting the markets, inhibiting competition, and discouraging private investment, besides the least efforts to promote research, innovation, and technology utilization to enhance crop yield and productivity.

 

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