Commodity prices remain high as traders weigh budget

Staff Correspondent | Published: 01:23, Jun 03,2017 | Updated: 01:28, Jun 03,2017

 
 

A file photo shows vendors selling vegetables at a market in the capital Dhaka. The prices of daily essentials including rice, sugar, vegetables and garlic remained high in the city’s kitchen markets on Friday a day after the announcement of the proposed national budget for the next financial year (2017-18). — New Age photo

The prices of daily essentials including rice, sugar, vegetables and garlic remained high in the city’s kitchen markets on Friday a day after the announcement of the proposed national budget for the next financial year (2017-18).
The essential commodities witnessed a sharp rise in their prices in recent weeks as traders increased the prices of the items excessively targeting at the demand for the commodities in the month of Ramadan that began May 28.
Traders said that the prices of rice started rising from March this year as the mill owners squeezed supply of the item in the name of paddy shortage and the trend still continued.
The coarse variety of rice was selling at Tk 46-48 a kilogram while BR-28 rice was retailing at Tk 50-55 a kg in the city markets on Friday.
The coarse variety of Miniket rice was retailing at Tk 55-58 a kg, while its fine variety was selling at Tk 60-62 a kg on the day.
Like the previous year, the price of sugar started to increase one month before Ramadan as wholesalers were not getting supply of the item on time from the refinery companies, they said.
Sugar was selling at Tk 80 a kg in most of the city markets while it was retailing at Tk 76-78 a kg at the Karwan Bazar kitchen market on Friday.
Garlic imported from China was retailing at Tk 350-380 a kg while the local variety of garlic was selling at Tk 140 a kg and the item imported from India was selling at Tk 150-160 a kg over the week.
A number of traders said that the proposed budget was yet to have any impact on the kitchen markets as the prices of most of the essentials had already gone up in recent weeks.
The companies which are the major suppliers of commodities are yet to identify the items prices of which would rise as today (Friday) is a weekly holiday, said a retailer at the Karwan Bazar kitchen market.
He, however, said that the prices of cigarettes increased instantly as the distributors decreased their supply after the announcement of the budget that proposed imposing high duty on the items.
The prices of Benson & Hedges, Gold Leaf and Star, three brands of British American Tobacco, increased by Tk 1 a stick and the items were retailing at Tk 12 a stick, Tk 8.5 a stick and Tk 6 a stick respectively in the capital city.
The prices of vegetables remained high over the week.
Aubergine was selling at Tk 40-70 a kg, tomato at Tk 40-80 a kg, bitter gourds at Tk 60 a kg, cucumber at Tk 30-50 a kg, bottle gourd at Tk 50 a piece, okra at Tk 50 a kg, papaya at Tk 50 a kg, carrot at Tk 40-50 a kg, green chilli at Tk 60-80 a kg and potato was selling at Tk 15-20 a kg on Friday.
The prices of onion increased by Tk 5 a kg and the local variety of the item was retailing at Tk 35-38 a kg while imported item was selling at Tk 25-28 a kg on the day.
The price of gram remained high and the item was retailing at Tk 85-100 a kg over the week.
A one-litre container of soya bean oil was selling at Tk 105-107 while a five-litre container at Tk 505-525 in the city’s kitchen markets on Friday.
Unpacked soya bean oil was selling at Tk 98 a kg while palm oil was selling at Tk 85 a kg.
The prices of beef and mutton remained high. Beef was selling at Tk 490-520 a kg and mutton at Tk 700-780 a kg on Friday.
Fine-quality packet salt was selling at Tk 40 a kg while the refined one was retailing at Tk 28 a kg in the city markets.
The price of broiler remained unchanged and the item was selling at Tk 150-160 a kg, while the locally-bred hens were selling at Tk 320-450 a kg on Friday.
The price of ginger remained unchanged and the item was retailing at Tk 100-120 a kg.
The price of eggs remained unchanged and the item was selling at Tk 28-30 a hali (four pieces) on Friday.
The price of red lentil remained unchanged over the week. The local variety of red lentil was selling at Tk 130-140 a kg. The fine variety of imported red lentil was also selling at Tk 130-140 a kg.
The coarse variety of imported red lentil was retailing at Tk 80-110 a kg over the week.
Puffed rice was selling at Tk 70-80 a kg while the hand-made puffed rice was retailing at Tk 120-140 a kg.
Gur was selling at between Tk 150 and Tk 200 a kg, and flaked rice at between Tk 70 and Tk 90 a kg.
Dates were retailing at the ranges between Tk 200 and Tk 400 a kg, depending on their quality.

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