ISLAMABAD: Finance Minister Shaukat Tarin on Monday directed the National Price Monitoring Committee (NPMC) to adopt a comprehensive and pro-active strategy to minimise the gap of prices between grower and retailers.
“The difference between wholesale and retail prices of essential items is not only huge but also varies across different cities which require thorough analysis,” Tarin said during a NPMC meeting.
“The reduction in gap will significantly lower the prices of the essential commodities for end users. Federal Bureau of Statistics is an independent entity but a committee with SAPM [Special Assistant to the Prime Minister] on Finance and Revenue as chairman and consisting of representatives from all stakeholders including representatives from provinces should engage with Federal Bureau of Statics to work out further perfection in data collection mechanism of PBS wherever required.”
The meeting took stock of the strategic reserves of essential commodities and the finance minister issued directions to relevant departments maintain the strategic reserves of essential commodities and ensure timely and appropriate measures to avoid any untoward situation.
The minister said the NPMC is a forum which is actively monitoring the prices of essential items and ensuring its smooth supply. He briefed the participants of the meeting that Prime Minister is determined to bring ease in the lives of the poor in Pakistan. A multi-pronged approach is being followed for this purpose.
Different schemes and incentives have been rolled out and many more are on the cards to uplift the lives of common people. The recently presented Federal Budget 2021/22 is practical manifestation of pro poor approach of the government.
All departments and organizations should contribute to uplift lives of the under privileged. Prices of commodities of daily use have direct impact on lives of common people.
The meeting was attended by SAPM on Finance and Revenue, Minister for National Food Security and Research, Secretary Finance Division, all chief secretaries, chief commissioner Islamabad, representatives of Pakistan Bureau of Statistics, and others.
During the meeting the Secretary Finance said the weekly sensitive price indicator (SPI) decreased by 0.59 percent during the last week. A week earlier the weekly SPI declined by 0.61 percent. It is the third consecutive week that SPI is declining. He further briefed the meeting that the prices of nine items declined during last week.
The prices of 28 items remained stable while prices of 14 items saw slight upward trend. The meeting took stock of the strategic reserves of essential commodities and the minister for finance and revenue issued directions to relevant departments maintain the strategic reserves of essential commodities and ensure timely and appropriate measures to avoid any untoward situation.
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