Edible oil and sugar became dearer last week increasing sufferings of the consumers, especially the commoners, who had already been hit hard by price hikes of other essentials.
Prices of staple rice showed a slight decline at wholesale level which is yet to be reflected in the city retail markets.
Both soybean and palm oil prices continued soaring which market experts attributed to global price hike, high import duties and lack of market monitoring.
Soybean oil of five-litre jar prices increased to Tk 590-635 based on companies which was Tk 570-600 a week back.
A one-litre jar prices increased to Tk 127-130 per litre which were Tk 122-130 seven days back depending on refiners.
Loose soybean oil prices also increased by Tk 4.0-5.0 per litre as was sold at Tk 120-122 a litre on Friday.
Palm oil of different quality was retailed at Tk 108-110 a litre on the day-- Tk 5.0-6.0 a litre hike in a week.
The current edible oil prices are 20-25 per cent higher than that at the same time of 2020, according to the Trading Corporation of Bangladesh (TCB).
Meanwhile, prices of sugar, another essential item, witnessed a Tk 4.0-5.0 a kg hike in a week as loose sugar was selling at Tk 66-70 per kg yesterday. However, prices of packed sugar remained static at Tk 70-75 per kg.
Secretary of the Consumers Association of Bangladesh (CAB), Humayun Kabir Bhuiyan, said existing high import duty as well as rising global prices caused notable increase in both edible oil and sugar prices.
He said the government should immediately review import duty on such essential items for which the country mainly depends on imports.
Besides a review of import duty, market monitoring should also be increased to prevent any manipulation, he added.
Prices of rice, which witnessed a series of increase in the last couple of months, declined by Tk 1.5-3.0 a kg at mill gates and city wholesales in the week. The slight decline of the staple prices was attributed mainly to beginning of import through private channel as the government has reduced the import duty to 25 per cent from 62.5 per cent earlier.
Traders said prices of coarse variety Swarna; midium quality Brridhan-28 and finer varieties like Miniket and Najirshail might decline at retail level in the next seven days, thanks to start of import of such varieties.
Coarse rice was retailed at Tk 48-52, medium Tk 55-60 and common finer varieties at Tk 65-72 a kg on the day in the capital, according to traders.
Egg, broiler chicken and some vegetables became slightly cheaper while chilli, ginger and garlic got a little bit costlier last week.