Uncompetitive Pakistani wheat prices halt export
By Tanveer Sher
KARACHI: Owing to uncompetitive rates of Pakistani wheat in the international market, the export of the commodity fizzled out thus bringing the process to a virtual halt.
Compared to Pakistani wheat, which is currently priced at $320 to $325 per metric tonne, the commodity is available in India at $290 to $300 per tonne, US and Australia at $280 to $285 per tonne and Ukraine at $225 to $240 per tonne.
Pakistani wheat was priced at around $275 to $280 per metric tonne, which was well in line with prevalent international rates when the export process kicked off but following announcement by the federal government to make upward revision in the wheat support prices, the rates of the commodity became financially unfeasible for the exporters to carry on their business.
The higher prevailing rates of Pakistani commodity appears to be highest across the globe thus making it unacceptable for the importers. An exporter claimed high wheat rates of Pakistan in the international market jeopardised any prospect of continuation of export of the commodity, which may cost Pakistan heavily in terms of foreign revenue.
Previous year Pakistan exported substantial quality of wheat to countries like Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and some Gulf countries fetching invaluable foreign currency to the national exchequer.
Muhammad Yousuf, former Chairman All Pakistan Flour Mills Association, Sindh Chapter claimed quality wise, Pakistani wheat had few parallel in the international market but its high rates has proved to be a major deterrence factor as far as its demand was concerned.
Meanwhile during a meeting between Deputy Commissioner Central Dr Saif who is also head of price control committee and representatives of wholesaler and retailer grocer association, it was agreed to enhance prevailing chakki flour rates at Rs 40 per kg which is Rs 1 higher compared to old rates of Rs 39 per kg.
A chakki flour owner said the new price allowed by the government appears to be sequel of new support wheat prices, which now stand at Rs 2850 per 100 kilogrammes bag compared to previous one of Rs 2,650 for the same weight. The consumers in the wake of new price of chakki flour would now be compelled to pay higher rates of their desired flour, which would only multiply their financial woes in terms of increased monthly kitchen expenditures, he added.
Courtesy: Daily Times