Business Today

There is scope for reduction in edible oil-sugar prices

The Bangladesh Trade and Tariff Commission (BTTC) believes that there is an opportunity to reduce the profit that the companies are making in the sale of soybean oil, palm oil and sugar. The company said these things in an interim report submitted to the Ministry of Commerce on Thursday.

The Ministry of Commerce decided on August 30 that the price of 9 products ie rice, flour, flour, soybean oil, palm oil, sugar, lentils, MS rod and cement will be fixed.

Commerce Minister Tipu Munshi announced that BTTC will sit with importers and traders to determine the prices of these products every month and the work will start within 15 days.

After completion of two weeks, BTTC sent the report to the Ministry of Commerce yesterday. They said there is room for some narrowing of profits in the supply chain of soybeans, palm oil and sugar. BTC has held several meetings with importers and traders before making this recommendation.

According to Trading Corporation of Bangladesh (TCB), a liter of soybean oil was traded at Tk 190 to Tk 195, a liter of super palm oil at Tk 145 to Tk 150 and a kg of sugar at Tk 90 to Tk 95.

In the interim report, BTTC expressed its inability to act on fixing the price of rice. BTTC said, the Ministry of Food and Agriculture can play the main responsibility in this case. Apart from this, BTTC has asked for 15 days to make recommendations on lentils, flour and flour. The company has asked for a month for the rod and cement. This information is known from the sources of the Ministry of Commerce.

Commerce Secretary Tapan Kanti Ghosh told Prothom Alo that he could not inquire about BTC’s interim report due to illness. However, the Ministry of Commerce has called a meeting again on September 19 to discuss the whole issue. BTTC, Bangladesh Competition Commission, TCB, National Directorate of Consumer Protection and Federation of Bangladesh Chamber of Commerce and Industry (FBCCI) have been requested to attend the meeting.

Confusion over the dollar rate
According to sources from the Ministry of Commerce, despite meeting with importers and traders, BTC could not decide on the dollar rate. Confusion has arisen as to whether the official rate or the inter-bank rate will be analyzed. The BTC report said that there is a big difference between the domestic market of rods and cement with the international prices.

First Vice President of FBCCI Mustafa Azad Chowdhury was present with the concerned parties in the meeting on the day of the decision to fix the price. When asked last night, he said on the phone that there is no reason to be complicated about the dollar rate to calculate the imported goods. It should be calculated based on interbank rates. It may be decided in the September 19 meeting.

Differences between international and domestic markets
According to the report submitted by BTTC 9 products to the Ministry of Commerce two weeks ago, the price of steel scrap in the international market has fallen by 14 percent in a year. However, the price of 60 grade rod has increased by 15 percent and 40 grade rod has increased by 16 percent in the country’s market. Apart from this, the price of cement has increased by 31 percent in a year.