Tarin underscores efforts made for keeping essential commodities stable

ISLAMABAD, Feb 8 (Alliance News):Federal Minister for Finance and Revenue Shaukat Tarin on Tuesday underscored the efforts being made for keeping the prices of essential items in check and measures to ensure smooth supply of essential commodities throughout the country.

The minister was presiding over the meeting of National Price Monitoring Committee (NPMC), which was also attended by the Minister for Food Security and Research Syed Fakhar Imam, Adviser to the Prime Minister on Commerce and Investment Abdul Razak Dawood, besides secretaries Ministries of National Food Security, Industries and Production, provincial Chief Secretaries attended the meeting, said a press release.

The Economic Advisor Finance Division, Managing Director Utility Stores Corporation, Chairman Trading Corporation of Pakistan, Chief Statistician Pakistan Bureau of Statistics, member customs, Deputy Commissioner ICT and other senior officers also attended the meeting.

The Economic Adviser Finance Division briefed the NPMC about weekly SPI which increase by 1.35 percent as compared to previous week which was decline of 0.11 percent. 33 food items contributed increase of 1.30 percent, whereas 18 non-food items contributed increase of 0.05 percent to the SPI.
The NPMC was informed that prices of 23 items remained stable in the last week.

Whereas prices of 06 items decreased contributed decline in SPI by 0.17 percent. The items shown decline included potatoes by 0.05 percent, onions by 0.03 percent, eggs by 0.04 percent and other by 0.05 percent.

While prices of 22 items increased that contributed increase in SPI by 1.52 percent which included tomatoes by 0.97 percent, chicken by 0.40 percent, garlic by 0.02 percent and others by 0.13 percent. The NPMC was informed that Potatoes, Onions, Eggs, Sugar, Moog Pulse, Mash Pulse have shown decline in the prices during the last week.

On the prices of wheat flour, NPMC was informed that wheat flour prices in Quetta remained on higher side as compared to other parts of the country. The meeting expressed concerns on higher prices of wheat flour in Quetta and directed Baluchistan Government to take concrete measures for bringing stability in the wheat flour prices by increasing its stock position and daily releases to the flour mills.

The Committee was also updated on the availability of sufficient stocks of wheat in the country and also discussed sugar prices in the country and was apprised that a slight decrease in the sugar prices have been witnessed in the last week.

Further, the Chair directed Ministry of Industries and Production to expedite the process for building strategic reserves of sugar in the country to maintain stability in prices.

The Committee was also updated on the prices of pulses in the country. NPMC was informed that there was stability in the prices of moong prices while other pulses have shown slight increase in prices.

Expressing concerns on the prices of pulses, the Finance Minister directed provincial authorities to control the hike in prices of pulses by keeping a check on hoardings and supply disruptions.

Meanwhile, the prices of edible oil were also discussed in the meeting and Secretary Ministry of Industries and Production updated the meeting on strategy to ensure fair prices of edible oil in market in coordination with provincial authorities against the edible oil manufacturers for undue price escalation.

The meeting further directed the Ministry of Industries and Production to work out pattern of demand and supply of different varieties and brands of edible oil and take corrective measures to control undue price hike.

The meeting was also apprised on the wholesale and retail prices of daily commodities in the country and it was informed that decrease has been witnessed in the wholesale and retail prices of various items in the last week. Slight increase has been witnessed in the whole sale and retail prices of potato and onion which was attributed to the increase in the transportation charges.

The Committee further directed the provincial authorities to take measures to reduce the gape between wholesale and retail price. The meeting was also briefed on the comparison of daily commodities’ prices in Pakistan with regional countries India, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka.

It was witnessed that prices of daily commodities in Pakistan are the lowest and Pakistan stood the best in the region in keeping a control on the prices of daily use commodities.

The NPMC was briefed on the availability of essential goods at subsidized rates at the Sastaa and Sahulat Bazaars across the country. The meeting expressed satisfaction on availability of daily commodities in Sastaa Bazars on discounted prices.


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