Federal Minister for Finance and Revenue, Dr. Abdul Hafeez Sheikh, chaired the meeting of the National Price Monitoring Committee (NPMC) in Islamabad today.
Minister for Industries and Production, Hammad Azhar, apprised NPMC that the production of sugar is likely to increase this year due to improved sugarcane crushing activity and would eventually release pressure on the upward price trend.
The representative from the Punjab government briefed that strict action has been taken against the middlemen in the sugarcane market, as directed by NPMC.
He informed the committee that the prices of sugar are currently stable in the Province. However, in some areas, a marginal hike is observed due to fog and weather conditions, stated the representative.
NPMC reviewed the price trend of essential commodities, especially wheat, sugar, eggs, and edible oil. Secretary Finance briefed NPMC that the prices of wheat and eggs have registered a downward trend due to coordinated and consolidated efforts of the Provincial governments.
The Finance Minister directed the Provincial governments and relevant departments to continue the momentum of strict price monitoring for the provision of the basic items at affordable prices across the country.
Minister for Industries, Hammad Azhar, briefed NPMC regarding the steps being taken to control the prices of edible oil and ghee. He also appreciated the efforts of the Punjab Government in minimizing the role of middlemen.
Federal Minister for Ministry of National Food Security & Research (MoNFS&R) briefed NPMC about the current status of wheat stock across the country and assured that all possible measures will be taken to ensure an uninterrupted supply of wheat at affordable prices.
Member Pakistan Bureau of Statistics (PBS) presented a live dashboard of prices of essential items for comparative analysis before NPMC, which will help monitor prices of essential items across major cities and markets in real-time.
The system is prepared by PBS to monitor food prices and figure out price fluctuations for timely decision making and smooth coordination among Provincial governments and departments concerned.
The Finance Minister lauded the mechanism for effective price monitoring and sound decision making. NPMC directed PBS to hold a meeting with Provincial governments to remove price disparity in essential items and urged the Provinces to draw maximum benefit from the newly developed system.
Minister for Industries and Production, Minister for National Food Security & Research, Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on Revenue, Provincial Chief Secretaries, Secretary (MoNFS&R), Secretary Industries & Production, Chairman FBR, Member CCP, Chairman TCP, MD PASSCO, MD USC, Member IT & Member National Accounts from PBS and senior officers of the Finance Division participated in the meeting.