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ISLAMABAD: The federal government and Pakistan Vanaspati Manufacturers Association (PVMA) have finalised Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to reduce prices of edible oil, ghee.

This was disclosed at a recent meeting of Federal Cabinet, presided over by Prime Minister Imran Khan, who is regularly holding meetings on commodities prices.

Official sources told Business Recorder, some of the Cabinet members highlighted the issue of rising prices of edible oil and ghee.

During discussion it was enquired as to why the duties/taxes on edible oil were not reduced inspire of the announcement.

Minister for Industries & Production, Khusro Bakhtyar explained that international price of edible oil had been going up continuously, generating pressure on the local price of cooking oil. However, an MoU with PVMA was being negotiated to pass on the reduction in the duties/taxes to the consumers. The MOU had been finalized and the matter would now be submitted to ECC.

PVMA announces cut in ghee, cooking oil prices

A Cabinet member pointed out that Utility Stores in Rawalpindi were not maintaining sufficient stocks of essential commodities, especially Atta, causing price instability and inconvenience to the residents.

Minister for National Food Security & Research, Syed Fakhar Imam noted that enough stocks of wheat were present in the country and the releases to Utility Stores Corporation (USC) were being made in accordance with their demand. The issue in Rawalpindi could be an administrative one, which needed to be handled locally.

Alluding to the need to monitor prices of essential kitchen items at the highest level, it was suggested that comparison of local prices with regional countries should be presented weekly to the Cabinet. The proposal was supported by the members.

After discussion, the Finance Division was directed to weekly present the comparison of local prices of essential kitchen items with regional countries, in the Cabinet meetings.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2021

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