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Sep 27, 1999

  1. International
  2. Finance
  3. Industry
  4. Policy
  5. Trade
  6. Gulf

Wheat prices increase by Rs 1-2 per kg

The prices of various varieties of wheat have increased by Rs 1-2 per kg over the last two to three weeks owing to what flour millers attribute to demand and supply situation in the market.

On Wednesday, the government increased the support price of wheat to Rs 265 per 40 kg from Rs 240 kg per 40 kg.

Millers said the impact of increase comes to Rs 62.50 per bag of 100 kg or around 62 paisa per kg but there will be no immediate increase in wheat prices as the rise in support price is for the new crop arriving in March-April, 2000.

Low demand for rice

Pakistani rice prices were likely to fall in the coming week as low international prices have lowered demand for local rice, dealers said.

'Vietnam is quoting $190 to $192 a tonne and there is little demand for Pakistani rice. There is very little local buying,' said a dealer at a Karachi-based rice export firm.

He said domestic prices for IRRI-1 could slide to Rs850/900 per 100 kg in the next two weeks to attract buying from exporters, who were expected to start exports next month.

Tea imports may be linked to exports

Export Promotion Bureau (EPB) is submitting a proposal before the Ministry of Commerce (MoC) for diverting tea imports so that the balance of trade with tea producing countries could be improved, official sources said here Wednesday.

Presently Pakistan annually imports around 100,000 tons of tea worth $227 million from different countries but the bulk is coming from Kenya, followed by Sri Lanka and Bangladesh.

Sources said that the objective of this proposal, beside improving the balance of trade with the tea exporting countries is also to promote Pakistani products in these countries. There is a greater realization among official circles that if Pakistan has to tackle the acute problem of current account deficit, methods other than increasing exports alone should also be exercised.

Falling onion prices

Balochistan has asked the federal government to save its farmers from huge financial losses by making early arrangements for the procurement of onion crop by the PASSCO following fresh fall in commodity prices in the major national markets.

It has pointed out that government's decision to revise maximum export price last month (MEP) downward to encourage onion exporters has failed to yield expected positive results.

Export of towels, sports, surgical goods goes down

Though major foreign exchange earners edged up marginally during Aug '99, the export of some traditional items like sports goods, surgical goods, tarpaulin and towels went down as against Aug '98 by 58.93%, 46.17%, 69.83% and 59.33%, respectively.

The trade figures released Monday by Statistics Division reveal That non- traditional exports like vegetables (213.44%) and petroleum/petroleum products (8702.38%) have made unprecedented gains.

Carpet industry fetched 33.67% higher foreign exchange while the raw cotton export fell down by 100% and leather manufactures nose-dived by 34.93%

Export of tile following rose: fish and fish preparations 67.23% ($7.515m to $12.567m), tulle lace embroidery 367.19% ($384 000 to $3.697m)- waste material of textile 55.53% ($389,000 to $605,000); vegetable 213.44% ($1.733m to $5.432m), carpets, carpeting 33.67% ($12.416m to $16.597m); guar and guar products 40.01% ($1.692m to $2.369m), molasses 33.33% ($2.739m to $3.652m)- cotton yarn 10.20% ($70.660m to $77.867m), knitwear 9.04% ($62.623m to $68.282m)- ready made garments 27.91% ($51.947m to $65.304m).

Export of the following fared poorly in the month: Oil seeds 71.76% ($1.441m to $407,000), towels 59.33% ($16.514m to $6.717m) cotton bags/sacks 49.31% ($3.194m to $1.619m), tarpaulin, canvas goods 69.83% ($3.961m to $1.195m); sports goods 58.93% ($22.850m to $9.384m), surgical medical instruments 46.17% ($8.271m to $4.452m); leadher manufactures 34.93% ($34.913m to $22.728m); raw cotton 100% ($49,000 to zero); fruits 29.45% ($4.393m to $3.099m), leather 25.13% ($14.243m to $10.664 m)crude animal materials 35.97% ($1.604m to $1.027m).

The August trade figures reflect that import of milk, wheat (unmilled), and sugar reduced by 54.83%, 58.45% and 94.46% respectively.

Quetta gets big dates export order

Balochistan has received orders for the export of more than 50,000 metric tons of dates to the foreign countries including India, Malaysia, Philippines, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh, chamber sources confirmed here on Monday.

These sources said high quality dates produced in the province attracted attention of the foreign buyers at dates shows held recently at Karachi and Turbat. Annual dates production was about five lakh tons this year. More markets for Pakistan dates are being explored abroad.

Clinker exports to BD

The DG Khan Cement Factory has become the first manufacturer from Punjab and the NWFP to export clinker and earn valuable foreign exchange for the country, according to a press release.

The factory exported 20,500 tons of clinker to Bangladesh last week, which were loaded from Port Qasim on MV Ken Koku in a record time of three days.

The clinker export from Pakistan was possible mainly due to increase in export rebate of Rs.800/- per ton by the Ministry of Commerce earlier this year.