The Financial Express
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Cooking oil, fish costlier in Bangladesh market

| Updated: October 19, 2020 18:41:01

- Focus Bangla file photo - Focus Bangla file photo

Loose edible oil and fish witnessed further hike in prices last week, augmenting woes of the commoners.

Potato price, however, showed a decline by Tk 5.0 a kilogram (kg) on Friday but were still much higher than that of the government-fixed rate.

Palm oil increased again by Tk 2.0-3.0 a kg in a week as super palm oil sold at Tk 90-92 a litre on Friday.

It is the third time in the past one month that prices of the edible oil surged, according to grocers.

Loose soya bean oil also showed a further Tk 2.0 hike as sold at Tk 95-97 a litre on the day.

However, bottled oil prices were increased by refiners in the last week of September by Tk 5.0-7.0 a litre.

Bottled oil of different companies remained static at their previous high last week as sold at Tk 110-115 a litre.

The refiners said they have raised prices following a surge in the global market over the last five months.

They have urged the government to update the present VAT and tax provisions so that they could supply edible oils at low rates to the market.

Market observers suggested ensuring strict monitoring and a review of import duties so as to keep prices within the reach of the limited-income people.

Stored potatoes were sold at Tk 45-50 a kg on Friday-down by Tk 5.0 a kg at retail level.

But the price is still much higher than the government-fixed rate of Tk 30 a kg.

The Department of Agricultural Marketing on October 14 fixed maximum cold-storage, wholesale and retail prices of potato as Tk 23, Tk 25 and Tk 30 a kg respectively.

The decision was made as potato prices shot up to Tk 50-55 a kg last week, marking a 25-per cent hike.

According to the Bangladesh Cold Storage Association, all the cold storages across the country have raised government-fixed price chart at their storehouses.

Traders can take out potato from the storages only if they follow the price chart, it said.

Prices of most of the indigenous fish species rose last week that traders attributed to a fishing ban in hubs following the 'mother hilsa conservation programme'.

Indigenous rui, pabda, shrimp, tengra, golsha, kachki, taki, cultured shing and magur have witnessed a price hike of Tk 50-150 a kg in a week.

Rayer Bazar fish vendor Mursalin Hoque said hilsa trade has been halted amid a fishing ban in major sanctuaries from October 14 which will end on November 04.

A lack of hilsa has raised demand of other fish, especially indigenous ones, resulting in a rise in prices, he observed.

"I bought riverine rui of medium size (1.5-2.0 kg) at Tk 300 a kg from Shawari Ghat on Friday which was hardly Tk 250 a kg before the fishing ban."

"I'm selling those at Tk 350-380 a kg," Mr Hoque added.

Wholesale prices of most riverine species have witnessed a notable hike at Mawa, Shahjadpur of Sirajganj and Bhairab of Kishoreganj in the past two days amid the fishing ban.

Meanwhile, lentil of medium variety showed a Tk 10 hike per kg last week as sold at Tk 90-95 on Friday.


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