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5 December, 2019 12:50:42 AM / LAST MODIFIED: 5 December, 2019 02:43:35 PM
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No relief for consumers as onion prices still soar

Local onion sold at Tk 230 per kg in the retail market but imported ones are sold at Tk 210 per kg
Staff Reporter, Dhaka
No relief for consumers as onion prices still soar
A policeman streamlines the people gathered in front of Bangladesh Bank at Motijheel in the capital yesterday to buy onion from a TCB fair price shop at Tk 45 which is pricier across the country. Focus Bangla Photo

While the prices of vegetables were decreasing steadily, onion prices remained high at kitchen markets in the capital and elsewhere in the country yesterday. Local onions sold for between Tk. 210 and Tk. 230 per kg in the retail market yesterday. The imported varieties fetched between Tk. 180 and Tk. 210 per kg. Kashem, a wholesaler at Karwan Bazar, said local onions were selling in the range of Tk. 210–240 per kg, while onions from Myanmar went for Tk. 180–190,

the Egyptian variety for Tk. 165–190, and the Chinese variety for Tk. 140–165 yesterday.  “The prices may rise further if the supply shortage persists,” said Khorsed, a trader at Mirpur Muslim Bazar.  “Today we sold local onions at Tk. 200 per kg, Burmese onions at Tk. 180–190 per kg, Egyptian onions at Tk. 180 per kg, and Chinese onions at Tk. 150 per kg,” he added.

The state-owned Trading Corporation of Bangladesh (TCB) said the local variety of the bulb was selling at Tk. 220–230 per kg, while the price of the imported varieties ranged between Tk. 120 and Tk. 230 per kg in Dhaka’s retail markets. However, TCB was still selling onions at Tk. 45 per kg at select locations across all districts and upazilas.

The authorities said that none of the government initiatives has helped to reduce the onion prices. The product is beyond the reach of consumers at present, they felt. Mohammad Hafiz, an onion importer, said that even though the country has enough onions in stock and the imported varieties have reached the markets, the price has remained unchanged.

“We hope the problem will be resolved within the next week when onions hit the market in large quantities,” he added.

The commerce ministry had sent four teams to seven districts of the country on Tuesday to monitor the prices, stock, supply, and production of onions in those areas, an official said. The districts are Faridpur, Madaripur, Rajbari, Kushtia, Rajshahi, Pabna, and Manikganj.

The teams will visit retail and wholesale markets in those districts in order to monitor the market prices of onions and their collections, a source said. They will also take action against hoarding and artificial price hikes if evidence of such malpractices is found, he added.

The teams will gather information on different varieties of onions, their sowing and harvesting periods, their production volume, and so on. Upon their return to Dhaka on December 6, they will submit reports to the commerce secretary.

The commerce ministry issued an order to this effect on Tuesday morning.

The prices of local and imported onions remain high at the retail level despite imports of the bulb by the government and the private sector since mid-September.

The government had sent 10 teams to different districts in October as well.

IK

 

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Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
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Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman
Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

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