ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Imran Khan has directed the Competition Commission of Pakistan (CCP) to bring necessary amendments to the existing rules in order to ensure price stability for commodities and end monopoly and exploitation in the market.
Chairing a high-level meeting on Thursday to fix the sugarcane support price, the prime minister said promotion of the agriculture sector, particularly the provision of relief to small farmers, was the top priority of the government. He said the government was laying special emphasis on ensuring side-by-side progress of the industrial and agriculture sectors so as to facilitate the common man.
Keeping in view the encouragement of farmers, the prime minister said steps should be taken to ensure stability in sugar prices. Meeting participants reviewed the factors in relation to fixing the official purchase price of sugarcane, urging provinces to take steps for effective implementation at factory gates and in retail markets.
It was also decided that the Punjab government would ensure payment of dues to the farmers by the sugar mills and deputy commissioners would submit a certificate in this regard after verification of the payment. The meeting reviewed the amendment made by the Punjab government to bind the sugar mills to timely pay the farmers or face a fine and also proposed an audit to check proper collection as per the policy.
The prime minister was also informed about the fixing of wheat support price at Rs1,365 per 40 kg and he expressed satisfaction over the decision of the Economic Coordination Committee (ECC). The meeting decided that the Punjab government would announce the decision on the official wheat price.
The premier gave directive for formulating a long-term policy, covering demand and supply, price fixing, lower cost for farmers and a favourable environment, and finalising it on a priority basis.
Published in The Express Tribune, November 29th, 2019.