Friday, October 18, 2019 | ePaper

Strong market monitoring needed ahead of Eid-ul-Azha

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IN last three days, onion prices at kitchen markets shot up by Tk 20 to Tk 45 to Tk 50 per kilogram. The sudden price hike of onion has surprised the consumers most. However, traders blamed shortage of supply for the unusual increase of price. Newspapers reported that per kilogram local onion selling at Tk 45 to Tk 50, which was Tk 25 to Tk 30 just two day ago. The imported onion was selling at Tk 40 to Tk 45 per kg, which was Tk 25 to Tk 35 per kg on Saturday. Trading Corporation of Bangladesh (TCB) data showed that per kg onion sold at Tk 25 to Tk 35 on Saturday, which stood at Tk 36 to Tk 50 yesterday, meaning a rise by Tk 15. At the same time, prices of garlic have also gone up by Tk 10 per kg. One kg garlic was sold at Tk 120 yesterady, which was Tk 100.
 Importers and local traders said they were not getting enough supply of onion and this is why the prices have gone up. An onion importer claimed that this year production of onion has been less compared to previous year while the production fell also in India. Bad weather hampered preservation of onion.   Moreover, India increased prices of onion on export to Bangladesh, which also pushed the prices up here.   
Only one month is left for Eid-ul-Azha. Though at present onion and garlic prices have shot up, we consider it as an ominous sign for the market. As consumption of onion, garlic, ginger and hot spices are increased during Eid-ul-Azha, the dishonest traders increase the prices taking the advantage. And often it's seen that retail prices of these essentials are increased despite adequate supplies. A section of importers with the help of some dishonest traders and administrative officials hike the price with an intention to pocketing extra money. On the other hand, the low-income-group people fell into misery.  
We do belive; the main reason behind the present onion price hike is that the authorities concerned do not play any significant role to monitor kitchen market. In fact, the markets are controlled by strong syndicates. They hike prices of essentials whenever they wish.

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