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November 13, 2019

Govt starts releasing 900,000 tons of wheat

Islamabad

November 13, 2019

Islamabad :Aimed at controlling the rising wheat prices and discouraging its hoardings, the government has started releases of 900,000 tons of wheat from its stocks, especially to Sindh, Balochistan and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa provinces.

During last few months, this staple food price has skyrocketed in the market, what the government official say, this scenario has been artificially created by hoarders, despite the fact there is no shortage of wheat in the country. This has been pinching the common man and irritating the government too.

To cope with this situation, the Economic Coordination Committee (ECC) of the Cabinet has recently allowed Pakistan Agriculture Storage & Services Corporation Limited (Passco) to release the wheat to these three provinces and end the artificial price hike.

Following this decision, federal Minister for National Food Security & Research, Sahibzada Muhammad Mehboob Sultan directed Passco to rigorously pursue the transportation to avoid any emergency situation.

In June 2019, Passco had 1.9 million tons of wheat stocks that consist of 0.7 million tons of new procurements while 1.2 million tons as buffer stocks.

A senior official of the ministry said that after release of 900,000 tons from the Passco storages to provinces, still there would be more than 500,000 tons of wheat stocks with this grain procurement and storage agency.

Out of total sanctioned releases, 400,000 tons of wheat would be released for Sindh, 450,000 tons to Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and 50,000 tons to Balochistan province. The Passco has started the release from its surplus stocks of wheat stock.

Passco has started the releases on 10th November that was 250 metric tons of wheat from Khanewal and Vihari godowns. On November 11, almost 600 metric tons of wheat would be carried from Khanewal, Vehari, Burewala and Bahawalnagar Passco zones. The transportation of wheat to Sindh has started from Hyderabad and Khairpur.

The transportation of wheat to Balochistan would start soon. Dispatch of wheat to KP province will be made from six Passco zones, comprising Alipur, Multan Zone, Khanewal, Vehari, Burewala and Bahawalnagar.

The News when contacted Passco MD Imran Nasir Khan, he said the releases have started from various godowns to KP and Balochistan and to Sindh the releases would get start today (Tuesday).

He further said that it would bring the price level to normal and would definitely eradicate the hoardings, as they had created artificial shortages.

When he was asked about the wheat smuggling to Afghanistan from two bordering provinces i.e. KP and Balochistan, he said that law enforcement agencies are already there and they have not heard such news of wheat smuggling to Afghanistan for the last two weeks.

The ministry and Passco would be in close liaison with the provincial food departments and would be updated about the movement of consignments to the provinces.

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