Prices of essential items in Pakistan lowest in South Asia: Fawad

Published October 28, 2021
Information Minister Fawad Chaudhry addresses a press conference on Wednesday. — DawnNewsTV
Information Minister Fawad Chaudhry addresses a press conference on Wednesday. — DawnNewsTV

ISLAMABAD: The federal cabinet was informed on Wednesday that prices of essential items in Pakistan were lowest in South Asia.

“Except vegetable ghee, prices of all essential items are lower in Pakistan as compared to the prices in the whole region,” said Information Minister Fawad Chaudhry at a press conference after attending a meeting of the federal cabinet presided over by Prime Minister Imran Khan.

“Prices of vegetable ghee are high, but all other things are cheaper in the country,” the minister said. “It is heartening to note that the prices in Pakistan are cheaper than regional countries, including India, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka,” he said.

Mr Chaudhry blamed the Sindh government for high prices of wheat flour in the country and claimed that the provincial government has no control on inflation.

Minister blames Sindh govt for high prices of wheat flour in the country

“Bilawal (Pakistan Peoples Party chairman Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari) was leading a demonstration in Karachi against inflation but he does not know that it is the responsibility of the provincial government to control prices,” he added.

He advised the PPP chief to admonish his chief minister for price hike in Sindh. He said the federal cabinet regretted that the Sindh government’s price control mechanism was very weak as edible items, including flour and lentils, were dearer in that province than other provinces.

“The prices of edible items in Sindh are higher than any other province,” he added.

Mr Chaudhry said the cabinet had directed the authorities concerned to share weekly comparison of regional prices with the people.

He said the Ministry of National Food Security briefed the cabinet about introducing modern technology in the agriculture sector.

The cabinet wanted small farmers to use modern technology for getting maximum production, he said.

The minister said the support price of wheat had been increased by Rs500 per 40kg in the past three years. A meeting would be held on Monday to discuss support price of wheat, he added.

He said Pakistan was seventh largest producer of wheat. Bumper crops of wheat and maize are expected this year.

Mr Chaudhry said the cabinet had asked the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) to conduct the by-election in NA-133, Lahore, through the electronic voting machines.

He said the cabinet reviewed implementation of the National Aviation Policy and decided to encourage vertical construction of buildings. “Prime minister emphasised that vertical construction of building should be allowed,” he added.

The federal cabinet approved appointment of members of the Expo Development Fund Board for one year.

The meeting also approved conduct of a screening test of the candidates to appear in the CSS examination.

The cabinet approved inking mutual cooperation agreements with some 31 countries for taking action against culprits involved in heinous crimes.

The meeting authorised Railway Police to take action against culprits who destroyed railway tracks even outside the jurisdiction of railway stations.

Published in Dawn, October 28th, 2021

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