ISLAMABAD: Adviser to the Prime Minister on Finance and Revenue Dr. Abdul Hafeez Shaikh chaired a meeting of National Price Monitoring Committee (NPMC) today. Minister for Industries and Production Hammad Azhar, Adviser to PM on Commerce Abdul Razaq Dawood, SAPM on Revenue Dr. Waqar Masood, Federal Secretary Finance, Federal Secretary National Food Security and Research, Secretary Industries and Production, Secretary Commerce, Chairman TCP, Chairperson CCP and Managing Director Utility Stores Corporation also participated in the meeting. The Provincial Chief Secretaries joined the meeting through video link.
The National Price Monitoring Committee (NPMC) reviewed the price trend of the essential commodities namely wheat flour, sugar, tomatoes, onions, vegetable ghee, potatoes and chicken on weekly basis. The Finance Secretary while presenting the price trend of essential commodities informed that according to latest SPI released by PBS, there is decline in the prices of wheat flour, sugar, onions while the prices of tomatoes, potatoes and chicken have slightly increased. It was informed that prices of vegetable ghee have remained unchanged. The committee was also informed about the price variation among the Provinces and the profit margin between wholesale and the retail.
The Chair held a detailed discussion with the Provincial Chief Secretaries regarding position of wheat and Sugar stocks in the Provinces. NPMC was briefed that sufficient quantities are available across the country. Adviser Finance emphasized that the provincial governments and all other concerned authorities take immediate proactive measures to control increase in prices.
During the meeting, Adviser Finance urged the representatives of the Provincial Governments to strictly monitor the difference between Retail and Wholesale prices in various commodities to ensure availability of the essential items for the consumers at affordable price.
Chief Secretary Sindh informed that Atta and sugar prices have declined in the province which will further stabilize in coming weeks. He also briefed that the Sindh government has established fair price shops to provide relief to general public. However, the chicken prices are slightly increasing and they are taking corrective measures accordingly.
Additional Chief Secretary Punjab informed that the prices of tomatoes are fluctuating due to seasonal factors but it will stabilize in coming weeks. He further briefed that the prices in the 360 sahulat bazar are low as compared to open market. He also informed that government of Punjab is releasing wheat as per policy as a result the atta prices have stabilized.
The Chief Secretary Khyber Pakhtunkhwa informed that they are releasing five thousand tons wheat daily as a result the prices of wheat flour bag have came down Rs20 to 30 in the market. It was also informed that local production of tomatoes in KP has started coming in the market; it is expected that in coming weeks the supply of tomatoes will increase significantly which will bring major decline in the price.
The Punjab and the Sindh Governments also briefed about the new crushing season of sugarcane and underlined that price of sugar would be reduced further due to availability of the local produce in the coming months.
MD, USC apprised NPMC about the sufficient stocks of sugar and wheat at the Utility Stores across Pakistan at subsidized price.