Adviser to Prime Minister on Finance and Revenue Shaukat Tarin on Wednesday welcomed the stability in sugar prices in the domestic market.

Presiding over a meeting of the National Price Monitoring Committee (NPMC), he reviewed prices of daily-use commodities and essential food items.

According to a statement, Finance Secretary Yusuf Khan briefed the NPMC about the weekly Sensitive Price Indicator (SPI), which fell 0.67% last week.

While reviewing the price trend of essential commodities, the secretary apprised meeting participants that prices of eight essential commodities registered a decline whereas rates of 23 items recorded no change in the past week.

He told the meeting that prices of daily-use items such as tomato, onion, potato, chicken and sugar fell significantly during the week compared to the same period of last year.

He said that the cost of 20kg wheat flour bags remained stagnant at Rs1,100 due to proactive measures of Punjab and Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa (K-P) governments and Islamabad Capital Territory (ICT) administration.

“Daily release of wheat by all provincial governments will further ease the pressure on wheat prices across the country,” he added.

While reviewing the price of sugar, the finance secretary told the meeting that rates were decreasing due to measures taken by the government.

“New stocks of sugar are arriving in the market, which will further push prices down,” he emphasised.

Speaking on the occasion, Punjab chief secretary announced that sufficient stocks of wheat were available, which would be released in line with the requirement.

Finance Adviser Tarin commended efforts of the governments of Punjab and K-P as well as the Islamabad Capital Administration. He directed all provincial governments to ensure that the released wheat was converted into flour and sold in the market at the price set by the government.

Discussing the price of edible oil, NPMC observed that the surge in its rates in the global market had affected prices in Pakistan as well.

While reviewing the production of pulses, it was informed that moong production had risen compared to the previous year. The adviser sought an increase in the production of pulses to reduce the burden on imports.

Moving over to fertiliser stocks, the meeting was informed that prices were on the decline due to effective administrative measures.

Published in The Express Tribune, December 2nd, 2021.

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