The Following Posts Source: Daily Times, Dawn and The News International

Urea, seed prices up in Peshawar

Post Source: The News International Saturday, June 27, 2009

By our correspondent

PESHAWAR: Farmers of the provincial metropolis are struggling to survive due to high prices of urea fertiliser and quality seeds, which have been continuously rising. Munib Khan, a shopkeeper, said prices of urea fertiliser had been increased manifold and a 50kg bag was being sold at Rs900. “Prices of seeds and fertilisers are on an upsurge. The price of a 50kg quality wheat seed bag was about Rs900 to Rs1,000 last year and now the same is being sold at about Rs1,500-2,000, depending on variety,” he said. Farmers in various parts of Peshawar were also concerned about the huge difference between prices of wheat and flour in local markets. They were of the opinion that the official price of wheat was about Rs650 during the crop harvesting season, but now a 20kg flour bag was available at about Rs600. Janas Gul, a farmer, said, “the government should take measures to reduce prices of fertilisers and quality seeds. Otherwise, it will be difficult for us to earn a livelihood.”

Procedure for wheat products’ export announced

Post Source: The News International Saturday, June 27, 2009

ISLAMABAD: The government here on Friday announced the procedures and conditions for export of wheat products including atta, maida and suji with immediate effect. According to a Commerce Ministry press release, the export should be limited to a cumulative ceiling of 200,000 metric tons and an individual exporter could export a minimum quantity of 50 metric tons and maximum quantity of 500 metric tons per contract. The procedures further elaborate that the export should be made after prior registration of export contract with the Trade Development Authority of Pakistan (TDAP) and the export would be allowed only in dollar terms. The press release said that further details regarding general procedures and export contract registration could be obtained at the web address: www. commerce.gov.pk.

0.1m tons chilli production likely

Post Source: The News International Saturday, June 27, 2009

ISLAMABAD: Green chillies would be cultivated over 52.9 thousand hectares of land during 2009-10 to produce 101.9 thousand tons of the commodity to fulfill domestic demand and for export purposes. An official in the Ministry of Food and Agriculture (MinFA) said here on Friday that about 104.63 thousand tons of chillies were produced during last year (08-09) as against the set target of 104.5 thousand tons. Quantity of urea tenders increased KARACHI: Trading Corporation of Pakistan (TCP) has enhanced the quantity of two urea tenders floated this month from 50,000 and 35,000 metric tons to 100,000MT each to meet local demand in kharif. A TCP official said here on Friday that these tenders were to be open on June 27 and June 30, 2009. He said that the corporation on Friday issued another tender for the supply of 50,000MT of urea from worldwide sources for July 11. The bidders need to quote C & F price for delivery at Karachi Port, Port Qasim and Gawadar Port.

Conditions for export of wheat by-products announced

Staff Report (Daily Times)

ISLAMABAD: The Ministry of Commerce (MoC) has announced the procedures and conditions required for export of wheat by-products (atta, maida and suji) with immediate effect. According to a MoC statement issued on Friday the export shall be limited to a cumulative ceiling of 200,000 metric tonnes (MT), and an individual exporter could export a minimum quantity of 50 MT and maximum of 500 MT per contract. The procedures further elaborate that the export shall be made after prior registration of export contract with Trade Development Authority of Pakistan (TDAP) and the export shall be allowed only in dollar terms. The MoC had allowed export of wheat by-products-atta, suji and maida through issuance of SRO 571 (i) 2009 keeping in view the federal cabinet’s decision. Federal cabinet, after analysing the wheat stock of the country, had approved 0.2 million wheat by-products to Afghanistan to meet its food requirements. With the announcement of procedures and conditions required for export of wheat products the exporters of the country would be able to start the process of exports of wheat by-products. Earlier, the federal government had postponed the decision on allowing wheat exports from the country till mid-July when the final production estimates would be available. The initial production estimates available with the government suggest wheat production at 23.7 million tonnes for 2008-09 and expectations are there that these estimates will increase to 24.5 million tonnes to 25 million tonnes this year when the final estimates will be available. Some 22 million tonnes wheat is required for national consumption, 1 million tonne for maintaining strategic reserves and it is expected that some 2 million tonnes of wheat will be available for exports during 2009-10.

Rice Economy on trial

Dawn Economic & Business Review June 22-28, 2009

By Usman Hameed and Abdul Ghafoor

PAKISTAN is 12th largest rice producer in the world, and the sixth largest exporter of the commodity. Rice is the country’s third largest crop after wheat and cotton. Exports account for 10 per cent of the world rice. The rice production meets both domestic and export demand. In 2008, output was of 5.56 million tons, 2.3 per cent higher than previous year’s yield. The overseas demand for Pakistani rice has increased over the years, increasing from 0.98 million tons in 1960 to 2.74 million tons in 2007. While average per capita consumption of rice in the country during 1997was 16.30kgs/person/year. According to Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), export value of Pakistan milled rice in 2006 was $1.15 billion. Trade liberalisation is imposing serious challenges as well as strategic openings for rice economy. The opinion on whether Pakistan should go for globalisation and liberalisation of its agriculture is at present sharply divided. Those who support trade liberalisation argue that the country has a strong comparative advantage in agriculture over most of the developed world, especially in case of high value crops, such as basmati rice. On the other hand, those opposing globalisation assert that liberalisation of trade would destabilise prices of primary commodities and expose the domestic market to violent fluctuations of world market. It is also feared that crop pattern may change, producer may get the benefit but the consumers may suffer. With one-third of its population living in absolute poverty, this is not considered as an option. The effect of trade liberalisation on selected commodities at the national level can be seen by estimating changes in the level of protection given to each commodity. The Nominal Protection Coefficient (which shows the ratio of domestic prices of basmati paddy to the world prices of basmati paddy) is given below. An NPC more than one indicates the extent of protection given to the commodity; trade liberalisation in this situation would reduce the domestic price. Conversely, when the NPC is less than one, it indicates that the extent of non-protection for the commodity and trade liberalisation in this situation would raise the domestic price. As nominal protection in case of rice is lower than one, so it indicates the higher prices for producer.. Pakistan has not received any protection during the period as the coefficients have been less than one. The table below shows the Nominal Protection Coefficients for basmati rice in Punjab province. Year …………………………NPCs 2000 …………………………0.73 2001………………………….0.59 2002 …………………………0.89 2003 …………………………0.99 2004 …………………………0.97 2005 …………………………0.99 2006 …………………………0.87

Trade liberalisation is bringing new issues and challenges. On the one hand, western countries are demanding removal of all restrictions that distort trade like tariff, quota etc. On the other hand, they are imposing ban on Pakistani export on the grounds of sanitary and phytosanitary conditions, environmental safety, use of child labour in production etc. For the success of external liberalisation, internal liberalisation is essential. Trade liberalisation will not be beneficial if domestic reforms such as removal of unnecessary government control, improvement in infrastructure, availability of required inputs, private sector participation in agriculture, sufficient and timely water availability and the burning issue of power loadshedding, are not undertaken. Trade liberalisation will bring the domestic growers in competition with developed countries producers who enjoys access to cheap capital, sound infrastructure, and scale advantage.To face this situation there is need to increase productivity and efficiency, which can not be achieved without government support. The need of the hour demands improvement in quality of seed, production system, post harvest management and removal of market imperfections.

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