ISLAMABAD: An increase of 13.5 percent in the price of sugar has been recorded during the last one year (September 2020-2021), 37.3 percent in the price of cooking oil, and 40.7 percent in the price of vegetable ghee. This was stated by the Finance Ministry that said that per kilogram refined sugar price was increased to Rs107.59 in September 2021 from Rs94.79 per kg in September 2020 to Rs107.59, cooking oil 5kg Dalda to Rs1,726.75 from Rs1,257.90 and vegetable ghee Dalda per kg to Rs343.26 from Rs244.13, while 30kg wheat flour bag to Rs1,203 from Rs1,009.55.
An official said that minting profit by the middleman has really been the concern of the government and that that area has not yet been addressed. The Finance Ministry said that the government has been expanding the network of Sasta Bazaars and the Utility Stores outlets for the provision of smooth supply of daily use items.
The Finance Ministry said that the National Price Monitoring Committee (NPMC) and the District Price Control Committees have actively been monitoring the prices of essential items. The government is also committed to establish USC outlets all across the country in order to provide relief to the common man. All these measures will help deal with the price issue for the common man and strategic reserves are also being built to deal with the challenge.
Most importantly, the prices in the international market are on a declining trend during the month of September 2021 compared to August 2021 - sugar 0.0 percent, soybean oil -2.4 percent, and wheat negative 4.6 percent, which augur well for domestic prices of the country, the ministry added.
The ministry added that the present government has taken various policy initiatives, administrative actions, and relief packages to control the inflationary pressure, which has been mainly derived from global market commodity prices.
The higher international food prices were transmitted to countries, net importers. Pakistan's dependence on wheat, sugar imports has increased during the last three years of the present government.
Copyright Business Recorder, 2021