Start of onion import cuts its prices in Dhaka
The prices of onion fell by at least Tk 10 to Tk 15 per kilogramme (kg) in Dhaka's retail markets today, a day after the government allowed import of the cooking ingredient from India.
Retailers were selling onion at Tk 80 to Tk 90 per kg in different kitchen markets in the capital.
The retail prices of onion were between Tk 90 and Tk 100, according to data from the state-run Trading Corporation of Bangladesh.
Shibly Sheikh, a retailer in Karwan Bazar, said he was selling onions at Tk 85 to Tk 90 per kg today as the wholesale prices are inched down.
Onion was sold at Tk 3,400 to Tk 3,600 per maund (37 kg) on Saturday, but now, it is being sold at Tk 3,150 to Tk 3,300 per maund, said Mohammad Kalam Sheikh, a wholesaler at Karwan Bazar.
The price has come down as the government has allowed import of onions from India, said Mohammad Majed, a wholesaler of Shyambazar.
On June 4, the government announced that it would allow onion imports to reduce the suffering of lower-income groups amid ongoing inflationary pressure.
The decision comes as prices of the bulb have soared abnormally due to stockpiling among a section of traders and growers, according to an official of the agriculture ministry.
Onion imports have remained halted since March 15 in a bid to ensure better prices for local producers.
Data from the commerce ministry shows that the annual demand for onion in Bangladesh is above 25 lakh tonnes at present.
This year, the agriculture ministry claimed that production is about 34 lakh tonnes.
An official of the ministry, said although there is sufficient local production, almost 25 per cent of the total yield is wasted each year due to the lack of storage facilities.