Sugar prices are stable even in Ramzan: says Khurram Dastgir

 
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Islamabad, June 20 (TNS): Minister for Commerce Engr. Khurram Dastgir Khan on Tuesday said that amid government efforts sugar prices were stable around Rs. 56 per kilogram during the holy month of Ramzan when its consumption reaches to peak.

Dastgir was chairing monthly meeting of the Inter-Ministerial Sugar Monitoring Committee, tasked by the ECC of the Cabinet to monitor the supply, price, and export of sugar, was held at Commerce Ministry.

He said that last year the sugar prices reached up to Rs.70 in Ramzan but during this holy month the prices are stable around Rs. 56, which is benefiting the consumers throughout the country and has helped in controlling inflation.

The meeting noted with satisfaction that under Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s vision, Ministry of Commerce through judicious regulation has successfully reduced sugar price in the country, which has declined for the first time in Ramzan contrary to the trend during previous years.

The Committee was briefed that the sugar price in the domestic market according to the Sensitive Price Index for the week ending 15th June, 2017 was 56.30 per kg which was 11.1% lower than the level of December 15, 2016 when the export of sugar was allowed by the ECC.

The Committee also observed that out of the total quantity of 0.425 million metric tonnes (MMT) allowed for export by the ECC during the current crop year, a total of 0.391 MMT sugar quota has, so far, been allocated by State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) and around 0.348 MMT has been exported.

In view of abundant surplus sugar stocks available in the country as reported by Sugar Advisory Board of Ministry of Industries, the Committee decided to recommend to the ECC an export of 0.6 MMT of sugar, in addition to the 0.425 MMT already allowed for export, subject to the condition that the price stability in the domestic market is maintained.

In case of any abnormal increase in the domestic price of sugar, the Committee would recommend to the ECC the stoppage of further exports. Once 0.45 MMT out of the allowed quantity of 0.6 MMT is exported, the Inter-Ministerial Committee will meet again to review the stock/export situation and recommend enhancement of export quantities, if deemed appropriate.

“In 2016-17, there has been a record sugar production in the history of Pakistan, as well as bumper crops of wheat, maize, and potatoes. Commerce Ministry is striving for maximum exports of sugar after fulfilling domestic needs”, said the Commerce Minister.