Wheat, sugar imports failed to dent prices: Shahid Rasheed



ISLAMABAD – Former President ICCI Shahid Rasheed Butt on Saturday said wheat and sugar imports have failed to reduce prices in the market which indicates the influence of mafia.

The reasons behind the price spiral are said to be smuggling, hoarding, inaction by authorities, the influence of cartel and profiteering by whole sellers and retailers, he said.

Shahid Rasheed Butt said that authorities are expressing weakness while price control mechanism has become dysfunctional which is adding to the onslaught of mafia on helpless masses.

He said that former central and provincial governments used to hold weekly price monitoring meetings to avoid shortage and keep prices in check but the present government is not very interested in it while different experiments have worsened the situation.

The business leader said that delay in announcement of support price, delay in imports, unnecessary haste in the export of wheat and sugar, inaction against mafia and an unholy alliance of some bureaucrats with mafia has also worsened the situation.

He said that prices of sugar and flour jumps in the market as soon as the top government functionaries announce their objective to reduce prices, therefore, the government should stop interfering in the market if it has no intention to control it.

The government has been unable to check price of sugar and wheat since it came to power and its decisions have strengthened the food cartels while the situation is not the same in the other countries, he asked.