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October 16, 2020

ECC approves 340,000 tons of wheat import by TCP

Business

October 16, 2020

ISLAMABAD: The government on Thursday approved 340,000 tons of wheat import by the Trading Corporation of Pakistan (TCP), while accepting the lowest bid of $284 per metric offered by a Russia-based grain trader GTCS.

The decision was taken during a meeting of the Economic Coordination Committee (ECC) of the cabinet presided over by Adviser to the Prime Minister on Finance Hafeez Shaikh through a video link.

The ECC is expected to consider Rs1,700 per ton as wheat support price proposed by the food security ministry in the next meeting tentatively on Monday, according to sources.

The ECC said the imported quantities will be distributed amongst Pakistan Agricultural Storage and Services Corporation, Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa in proportion to what they have ordered/ demanded.

The fifth tender was issued on 9th October for the procurement of wheat. It was opened on 14th October and according to TCP six parties participated in the bidding process.

The food security ministry requested the ECC for the approval of the lowest bid offer by GTCS for quantity of 340,000 tons of imported wheat and the permission to distribute the imported quantities equally among three recipient agencies. They also requested for approval, in principal, for procuring additional quantity from Russia by TCP.

The meeting was told that the TCP provided a schedule of 29 vessels that will arrive till January 2021 bringing it to 1.5 million tons of wheat in the country. The food security ministry assured the ECC that they have been making their best efforts to overcome any future shortage of wheat in the country.

State-owned TCP finalised deals to import 660,000 tons of wheat while it was given a target of 1.5 million tons. TCP’s two cargoes, carrying 100,000 tons of wheat, have arrived in Pakistan. TCP’s first wheat consignment of 55,125 tons was arrived on October 7 and the second shipment of 55,000 tons arrived on 8th October. Another wheat consignment, imported by TCP, is expected to reach Pakistan this week.

Private sector has booked more than 22 ships carrying 1.3 million tons of wheat. Of that, 500,000 tons have arrived in Pakistan. Some three more consignments of the private sector are expected to arrive this month.

Wheat flour prices have touched all-time high of Rs75 / kilogram despite wheat import of half a million tons.

Pakistan is expected to produce 25.2 million tons of wheat this year with shortfall estimated at 1.6 million tons.

ECC also granted approval in principal for the import of wheat from Russia by TCP, for which a detailed summary regarding the fresh offer from the Russian government along with quantities will be presented before ECC for approval.