27/10/2007 (The International News, Pakistan), Islamabad - The Pakistan Vanaspati Manufacturers’ Association (PVMA) has expressed its annoyance and displeasure over government’s action to reduce ghee prices by 25 per cent.
A PVMA news statement issued on Friday claimed that recently police have started raiding ghee manufacturing units and have particularly targeted certain brands of vanaspati ghee/cooking oil forcing them to reduce the price of the product by 25 per cent.
“The main ingredient of vegetable ghee/cooking oil is imported edible oil from Malaysia and Indonesia. Since July 2006, the c&f price of imported edible oil ie RBD Palm Olein has almost doubled. The c&f price stood at US$462 per metric ton in July 2006, $625 on December 29, 2006, $660 on March 30, 2007, $808 on August 30, 2007 and at present it is $940 per metric ton. This price is expected to reach $1,000 per ton,” the statement explained.
The statement added that the PVMA raised the issue with the government at various fora, but unfortunately the association received only a lukewarm response from the authorities concerned. It said that the present price level would continue to increase and the forecast is that the price of imported edible oils will further increase at least till March/April 2008.
“Considering that the government is already collecting Rs22 to Rs24 per kg as duties and taxes on imported edible oil and has generated substantial additional revenue due to additional collection of federal excise duty/sales tax resulting from increase in the price of imported edible oil, the association is convinced that there will be no shortfall in government revenue.”
The association also urged the government to consider this vital issue urgently and seriously failing which a large number of ghee manufacturing units, that have already lost about 25 per cent of the market, will close down.