Economics & Business

Govt to import three hundred thousands tonnes of Urea

ISLAMABAD: The Government has decided to import three hundred thousand tonnes of Urea to ensure its adequate supply to farmers and provide more subsidies on DAP fertilizer to stabilize its prices. This was announced by Advisor to the Prime Minister on Industries and Production Mian Manzoor Ahmad Wattoo at a news conference in Islamabad this afternoon.

He said prices of Urea are increasing in the international market and with this in view middlemen are resorting to hoarding and black-marketing, which could affect cotton and rice crop. With this in view, at the instance of the Government, producers of Urea have agreed to sell fifty percent stock from their warehouses directly to farmers and fifty percent through dealers with immediate effect. He said if need be fertilizer would be sold through National Fertilizer Corporation or utility stores network to foil designs of hoarders.

The Advisor and Minister for Food and Agriculture would visit provinces to meet chief ministers to firm up strategy against hoarders. Mian Manzoor Wattoo said three hundred thousand tonnes of Urea is being imported from Saudi Arabia, half of which would reach the country by the end of the month or beginning of the next month.

The Advisor pointed out that the prices of DAP fertilizer are also increasing and may touch 5000 rupee a bag. The Government would provide required subsidy to keep its prices stable at 3000 rupee a bag. Mr. Watto told a questioner that two more factories of Urea are being established and the country would become self-reliance in Urea by 2010.

He said Morocco has also agreed to collaborate in the establishment of another factor of DAP fertilizer, which would help significantly improve local production of the commodity. The Advisor said the Government has asked cement manufacturers to reduce prices of cement. They would be submitting cost analysis and the price would be determined by the government. He said a mechanism has been evolved to address grievances of industrialists to help promote industry and industrial growth.-SANA

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Noreen Gill

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