Flour millers have hinted at enhancing 20 kilograms flour bag’s price by Rs 25 on the pretext of increase in the price of electricity. If implemented, this hike would push the 20-kilogram flour bag price to Rs 825 per bag. Pakistan Flour Mills Association’s (PFMA) former president Asim Ahmad Raza said electricity bills for September received by flour mills had been found to be higher than their estimates.
He said they had agreed with the government to charge Rs 85 per 20 kilograms bag as grinding charges but with recent hike in electricity tariffs it was no longer possible, and in line with the tariff charged for September that should come to Rs 140 per bag. He said they had had a meeting with the Director Food Punjab in that regard. According to him, the official sought time till Saturday to re-fix the price of flour bag.
Meanwhile, Founders Group in the PFMA has also urged the government to provide a subsidy on agricultural inputs up to 30 percent and fix the support price at Rs 1200 per maund to ensure provision of flour on cheap rates to people. Founders Group’s Chairman Bilal Aslam Sufi, Co-Chairman Khalique Arshad and others, while addressing a press conference here on Friday, said flour mills as well as consumers were hit hard due to high prices of electricity, petroleum products and taxes. They said increase in the flour bag price had become inevitable. They said in such a situation, if the wheat support price was fixed at Rs 1500 per maund then it would make the life of common man miserable.
They said the same flour bag was being sold at Rs 270 in Musharraf regime, which had now reached to Rs 785-790 per bag due to increase in the support price. They said if the support price was further increased the price of 20-kilogram flour bag would reach to Rs 925 and Roti would be sold at Rs 10 per piece. They warned that in such a case, the government would have to face the anger of the public.