Federal Minister for Finance & Revenue, Dr Abdul Hafeez Sheikh has directed the provincial governments to follow a self-sustaining model and streamline daily release of wheat to ensure steady supply in the provinces as well as districts.
The finance minister issued these directions while chairing the meeting of the National Price Monitoring Committee (NPMC) on Monday.
The finance minister directed the Ministry of NFS&R to chalk out a comprehensive strategy to ensure smooth supply of wheat flour at reasonable rates for the general public. He also urged the provincial governments to continue taking necessary steps to ensure provision of basic items at affordable prices across the country. The National Price Monitoring Committee (NPMC) reviewed the price trend of essential commodities especially wheat, sugar and edible oil during the week.
The finance secretary briefed the meeting that weekly SPI registered a decline of 0.22 percent and the main drivers behind decrease in SPI are falling prices of eggs, tomatoes, potatoes, onions and chicken.
Prices of 21 basic items remained stable whereas 07 items registered a decline during the week, he told the meeting.
Federal Minister for National Food Security and Research Fakhar Imam apprised NPMC that all stakeholders are on board with reference to the existing position of wheat stock in the country. He assured all possible measures would be taken to ensure smooth supply of wheat across the country.
Federal Minister for Industries and Production Hammad Azhar updated the NPMC about the recent decline in international prices of palm oil which will eventually reduce the upward pressure on the prices of edible oil in the domestic market.
The finance minister directed the Ministry of Industries and Production to continuously monitor stocks of sugar, its supply position in the market and prices throughout the country for the consumers.
Member Pakistan Bureau of Statistics updated NPMC about the benefits of the recently developed dashboard of prices of essential items and progress on its implementation in coordination with the provinces.
The NPMC directed PBS to provide necessary support to the provinces to make the system fully functional for vigilant monitoring of prices of essential commodities and to remove price disparity across the country.
Besides others, Adviser to the PM on Commerce Abdul Razak Dawood, SAPM on Revenue Dr Waqar Masood, provincial chief secretaries, secretary M/o Industries and Production, additional secretary M/o NFS&R, additional secretary Ministry of Planning, Development and Special Initiatives, chairman Federal Board of Revenue, Member Competition Commission of Pakistan, Chairman Trade Corporation of Pakistan, managing director Utility Stores Corporation, Member IT/HRM & Member National Accounts from Pakistan Bureau of Statistics and senior officers of the Finance Division participated in the meeting.