Govt increases wheat support price to Rs1,350 per 40kg
November 13, 2019
ISLAMABAD (92 News) – The government has increased the wheat support price to Rs1,350 per 40kg from Rs1,300 per kg. The decision was made during a meeting of the Economic Coordination Committee (ECC) which was presided over by Adviser to the Prime Minister on Finance Hafeez Shaikh on Wednesday. The ECC was told that the minimum support price of Rs 1300 per 40 kg for wheat had not been enhanced for the last five years. However, in view of factors such as the world wheat situation, cost of production, export-import parity prices and domestic producer prices, an appropriate support price for the next wheat crop was necessary to meet the cost of production which had risen in 2019-20 to Rs 1,349.57 per 40kg in Punjab and Rs 1,315.72 per 40kg in Sindh as per findings of the Agriculture Policy Institute. The ECC discussed the issue in detail and in view of the world wheat price hovering around Rs 1,575 per 40kg with and Rs 1,440 per 40kg without duties and customs duties, decided to enhance the minimum support price for the next crop of wheat from the current Rs 1,300 per 40kg to Rs 1,350 per 40kg. The ECC also took up a proposal by Power Division for grant of ECC approval for execution of amendment to the implementation agreement governing Thal Nova Power Thar Private Limited and Thar Energy Limited by increasing the time period for exercise of Government of Pakistan’s right to terminate the both projects from 400 days to 490 days. The meeting also considered and approved a proposal by the Ministry of Interior for release of funds through a technical supplementary grant to the tune of Rs 670.553 million to HQ Frontier Corps KP (North) Peshawar for the completion of laid down codal, financial, procedural and legal formalities for various Project Implementation Letters (PILs), including the upgradation of FC KP (North) training centre at Warsak Peshawar and construction of FATA Levies Training Centre at Shakas and 10 X FATA Levies check posts. The ECC also took up a proposal by the Ministry of industries and Production for grant of technical supplementary grant of Rs 6 billion to the Utility Stores Corporation for subsidy and provision of essential commodities such as flour, sugar, ghee, rice and pulses at a fair price to the under-privileged sections of the society, in line with the package announced by the Prime Minister on 8th November 2019. The ECC discussed the proposal entailing transfer of Rs 4 billion funds from the BISP and arrangement of another Rs 2 billion by the Finance Division, in detail and in order to ensure that this targeted subsidy reached the people it was meant for, constituted a committee under Abdul Razak Dawood, Advisor to PM on Commerce, Textile, Industry & Production and Investment and comprising Railways Minister Sheikh Rashid, Privatisation Minister Muhammad Mian Soomro, Governor State Bank of Pakistan Reza Baqir, Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on Social Protection and Poverty Alleviation and Chairperson BISP Dr Sania Nishtar, Secretary Finance, Secretary Industries and MD Utility Stores Corporation to come up within the next few days with a realistic and foolproof method involving use of information technology to ensure the objective of the subsidy as announced by the Prime Minister was fully met and the poorest of the poor benefited from this scheme by purchasing essential items from the 3600 utility stores spread across Pakistan.