Believing businesses on oil price hike was a mistake: Munshi
Believing the businessmen was a mistake as they have hoarded and hiked the edible oil prices abnormally in the local markets after the Eid-ul-Fitr, Commerce Minister Tipu Munshi said today.
The businessmen were asked to maintain a stable supply of edible oil in the local market and not to increase its prices during Ramadan, the minister said.
The businessmen did not increase the prices during the month of fasting, but they hoarded oil 10 days before the Eid-ul-Fitr and the whole supply chain was abnormally disrupted, he said.
The millers, refiners, wholesalers and retailers hoarded the edible oil as they knew its prices would be increased after the Eid, Munshi said.
"So, it was a mistake to believe them as they committed that they would maintain a normal supply of edible oil in the local markets."
The minister made the comments while facing a barrage of questions from the journalists at a pre-announced press conference held at the commerce ministry in Dhaka.
If the prices had been increased during the Ramadan, there would not be any abnormal hike and there would not have any crisis of the item in the local markets, the minister also said.
The minister agreed that a section of traders have taken the opportunity and hoarded the edible oil to make a hefty profit.
Munshi also said if necessary his ministry will take the help of the Rapid Action Battalion to maintain stable supply of oil.
In the press briefing, Munshi also blamed the abnormal price hike of edible oil in the local markets on the rising international prices of crude edible oil.
The Trading Corporation of Bangladesh (TCB) will resume sale of edible oil at Tk 110 a litre of bottled soybean oil from June to the TCB cardholders, the minister said.
Moreover, the open market sale of edible oil along with other commodities through trucks across the country will begin in the middle of May, he said.