PM for taking administrative steps to stabilize prices of basic essential items

ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Imran Khan on Monday ordered the provincial Chief Secretaries to ensure all possible administrative measures to stabilize the prices of basic essential items, particularly to check the illogical difference of prices at wholesale and retail levels.

As the prices of basic essential items hit the common man, the present government’s foremost priority was to protect them, he added.

The Prime Minister was presiding over a meeting held here to review demand and supply as well as the prices of basic essential items.

Minister for Finance Shaukat Train, Minister for Industries and Production Makhdoom Khusro Bakhtiar, Minister for Planning Asad Umar, Minister for National Food Security Syed Fakhar Imam, Advisor to PM on Commerce Abdul Razzak Dawood, Minister of State for Information Farrukh Habib, Special Assistants to PM Dr. Shehzab Gill, Dr. Sania Nishtar, Jamshed Iqbal Cheema and Secretaries of the relevant ministries while Provincial Chief Secretaries and senior officers attended the meeting via video-link.

The Prime Minister said that as mere action against the officers of administration was not enough, results of the administrative steps should be seen so that the masses get relief.

He directed to ensure comprehensive planning and timely measures, keeping in view the future needs of sugar and wheat.

The Prime Minister was presented a comparative review of the prices of basic essential items across the country with a particular focus on the prices at wholesale and retail levels.

The meeting was briefed in detail about the existing sugar and wheat stocks in the country and the measures being taken to cater to future requirements. It was also briefed about the steps being taken to bring about a significant reduction in the prices of edible oil.

Chief Secretary Punjab briefed the meeting about administrative measures taken for stabilization of prices in the province.

The meeting was informed that action was being taken against the officers not fulfilling their responsibilities with regard to stabilization of prices.

Besides the suspension of seven assistant commissioners and two secretaries of market committees so far, warning has also been issued to two deputy commissioners, it was told.

The Prime Minister was informed that in order to reduce the prices of edible oil, dialogue with the relevant stakeholders had entered the final stages, as a result of which the price of edible oil was expected to drop by Rs 10 to Rs15 per kg. - APP