ISLAMABAD: As prices continue to soar, Caretaker Planning Minister Sami Saeed on Monday ordered the revival of the Decision Support System for Inflation (DSSI) to record and monitor prices of essential commodities in major cities across the country.
Chairing the National Price Monitoring Committee (NPMC) meeting, Mr Saeed instructed the Pakistan Bureau of Statistics (PBS) to resume the DSSI, a system that was scrapped in 2021 due to resistance from local authorities, Dawn has learnt from official sources in PBS.
In the PTI-led coalition government, PBS introduced the DSSI to record the gap between actual prices of essential food items and rates fixed by the district administrations. The web-based tool collects and analyses data and produces a report that compares the prices of commodities in different districts.
The DSSI report shows the discrepancy between the prices reported by the district administration and the PBS collection data on a weekly basis at the retail level. The system also creates a report that ranks the deputy commissioners based on the gap between the prices. The report shows which districts have a narrow gap and which ones have a wide gap.
Mr Saeed has resumed the regular meetings of NPMC, which were neglected by the PDM government as it had two or three meetings despite facing the worst inflation in the country’s history during its tenure.
In addition, the DSSI will also compare the difference in wholesale and retail prices of essential food items in different districts across the country. The PBS will highlight the difference in prices in different provinces as well.—
Published in Dawn, September 26th, 2023