ISLAMABAD: The Federal Government is to announce Minimum Support Price (MSP) of wheat in the first week of next month, after taking provincial governments on board.
Briefing National Assembly Standing Committee on Commerce, presided over by Raza Rabbani Khar, the officials of Ministry of National Food Security and Research said that last year the federal government had fixed MSP of wheat at Rs 2200/ 40 kg.
The Committee was informed that support price of wheat increased due to inflation and increase in fertilizer prices and other ancillary factors. In other countries, production increased when the support price was set higher.
Officials apprised the Committee that all provinces are fixing their own minimum support price for wheat. Sindh government has fixed the support price of wheat at Rs 4000/ 40 kg. Punjab is yet to fix the support price for wheat but hopefully, support price of wheat in Punjab will be around Rs 3,000/ 40 kg.
Ministry of National Food Security and Research informed the Committee that it wants a support price for wheat to be fixed by consensus among the provinces but provinces have not yet informed about the support price of wheat. Secretary Food, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, apprised the Committee that his government has set the support price of wheat at Rs 3,000/40 kg. When Chairman Standing Committee enquired about last meeting on support price of wheat, the officials of Ministry of National Food Security and Research failed to answer the question.
Chairman Standing Committee showed his anger at the officials of Ministry of National Food Security and Research for conflicting statements about minimum support price of wheat.
The Committee was apprised that wheat is being imported from Russia and Ukraine after approval of Federal Government.
Officials also informed that 1.6 million hectares of agricultural land has been affected by floods, adding that a package for flood affected areas has been given to the government, which includes seeds and a sack of DAP to the farmers. “If the proposed package is implemented, production will improve despite the floods as wheat cultivation will commence in December after the water recedes,” said the officials of the Ministry of National Food Security.
The Committee considered “The Trade Organizations (Amendment) Bill, 2022” (Government Bill). The Committee directed the Federation of Pakistan Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FPCCI) to provide a written consensus of all the Groups and representatives of chambers from all the provinces, on increase in tenure of office bearers of FPCCI for the two years, before the next meeting of the Committee.
he Committee deferred briefing on E-Commerce, Foreign Trade, TDAP, and performance of trade & investment Ministers/Counselors posted in Pakistani’s Trade Missions abroad, for the next meeting of the Committee.
The Committee unanimously approved the minutes of its previous meeting held on 26th July, 2022. The Secretary Ministry of Commerce updated the Committee on implementation status of the previous recommendations of the Committee.
The meeting was attended by Usman Ibrahim, Rasheed Ahmad Khan, ShaistaPervaiz, Shaza Fatima Khawaja Syed Javed Ali Shah Jilani, Muhammad Aslam Bhootani and Ahmed Hussain Deharr, MNAs. WajihaQamar and Dr. Ramesh Kumar Vankwani, MNAs joined the meeting on Zoom.
Copyright Business Recorder, 2022