Govt will flood markets with commodities to bridge supply/demand gap: Tarin


NPMC notes a massive price hike in major food items

Mohammad Arshad

Finance Minister Shaukat Tarin, Monday, said that the government would flood the markets with necessary commodities to bridge the supply and de-mand gap where needed to check price hike. Paki-stan is the net importer of key food items such as wheat, sugar and pulses.

The current upsurge in international food prices amid coronavirus pandemic makes it imperative to build strategic reserves of essential Commodities to bring stability in prices of items of daily use.

While chairing the meeting of National Price Moni-toring Committee (NPMC), here finance minister stressed the importance of meaningful interventions in the market by building strategic reserves of basic commodities namely wheat, sugar, edible oil/ghee, vegetables and pulses to prevent hoarding and un-due profiteering.

The NPMC reviewed the Year-on-Year interna-tional commodity prices and noted a massive price hike in major food items. Sugar registered a 44.4% increase in Y-o-Y comparison, palm oil 52.3%, soyabean oil 78.8% and wheat 18% respectively.

Correspondingly in the country, the sugar registered an increase of 19.33%, edible oil 27.25%, vegetable ghee 29.40% and wheat 11.77% respectively.International Commodity Price Comparison (Y-o-Y) International Prices Months Sugar ($/MT) Palm Oil($/MT) Soyabean Oil ($/MT) Crude Oil ($/Brl) Wheat ($/MT) Jul-20 270.0 694.0 821.0 42.8 212.7 Jul-21 390.0 1057.0 1468.0 74.4 250.9 % Change 44.4 52.3 78.8 73.8 18.0 Source: Pink Sheet of World Bank Pakistan Months Sugar Refined(Rs/Kg) Cooking Oil Dalda(Rs/5Kg) Vegetable Ghee Dalda (Rs/Kg) Wheat Flour (Rs/20Kg) Petrol (Rs/Liter) Hi-Speed Diesel (Rs/Liter) Jul-20 85.68 1268.76 246.92 1008.94 100.95 102.36 Jul-21 102.24 1614.44 319.52 1127.7 114.72 115.47 % Change 19.33 27.25 29.40 11.77 13.64 12.81.

Therefore, the finance minister directed Secretary M/o NFS&R to workout modalities for establishing commodity warehouses, storage facilities and agri-malls on basis of Public Private Partnership (PPP) and present a detailed proposal before the Commit-tee.

SAPM on Food Security Jamshed Cheema stated that a proposal in this regard has been finalized and would be presented shortly for approval.

Secretary, M/o NFS&R updated the NPMC about availability of sufficient stocks of wheat in the country.

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