Wheat rates start surging in open market
By Tanveer Sher
KARACHI: Wheat rates have started surging in the open market in the wake of speculations of expected inter-district ban on its movement in the province.
The wheat rates have increased from Rs 2,900 per 100 kilogrammes (kgs) to Rs 3,050 per 100 kgs, reflecting an increase of Rs 150. Wheat was earlier available to buyers at Rs 2,900 per 100 kilogrammes (kgs) bag, which is Rs 100 less as compared to the official rates of Rs 3,000 per 100 kgs.
Talking to the scribe, leading wheat traders at Jodia Bazaar informed that every year the Sindh Food Department places a ban on inter-district wheat movement with the sole objective of realising wheat procurement goal. They claimed that so far the campaign is moving at a snail’s pace as despite passage of more than a fortnight, the department has only been able to accomplish hardly 300,000 tonnes out of set target of 1.3 million tonnes for the current year.
As a consequence to hasten the procurement pace, the provincial food department intends to restrict free wheat movement inside the province specially to Karachi which is regarded as the largest consumer of wheat in Sindh.
Already the Sindh Food Department’s activities have been affected due to caretaker minister as it would take more than one month when a new regular minister would take charge of the ministry and expedite stuck up work.
Other major factor, as traders claimed, which has pushed wheat rates up was reluctance of the transporters to carry the commodity from interior Sindh to Karachi mainly owing to unending cycle of violence in the port city specially the relentless chain of explosions in different city’s areas, which has so far claimed scores of lives during the last one week.
Perturbed over the prevailing uncertainty in the city, majority of transporters have enhanced their transportation charges for carrying the wheat to Karachi thus pushing the overall cost of the commodity.
If the prevailing situation persists for one more week, the commodity rates could surge to as high as Rs 3,200 per 100 kgs to Rs 3,300 per 100 kgs bag which may have an adverse impact on existing rates of different flour varieties.
The Chakki flour which as a result of recent decline in its rates was being sold at Rs 38 to Rs 39 per kg may surge to old rates of Rs 43 to Rs 44 per kg in coming days ahead and current ex-mill price to the old level of Rs 40 per kg as compared to existing rates of Rs 33 to Rs 34 per kg if the inter-district wheat ban placed by the provincial food department remains and transportation of wheat charges continued to surge.
Furthermore the fear of expected ban of wheat movement has also prompted hoarders and traders of the commodity to make bulk purchases from the open market, which has also added fuel to fire in the shape of higher cost of the commodity. Source Daily Times
Rs 3,050 per 100 kgs
Rs 2,900 per 100 kgs
Published: Zarai Media Team