The price of rice is yet to fall in the city’s retail markets although traders at a meeting on Tuesday had assured the government to bring down the price of the staple from Wednesday.
Rice mills owners said that as per the promise they reduced the mills rate of rice by Tk 2-3 a kg but the price of rice remained unchanged in the retail markets.
At a meeting with commerce minister Tofail Ahmed, agriculture minister Matia Chowdhury and food minister Md Qamrul Islam rice mills owners and rice importers had commited to bring down the price of rice as the government announced to relax mandatory jute packaging act for rice and assured to stop extortion at toll plazas, highways and ferries during the transportation of rice.
After two days of the meeting, the price of rice remained unchanged in the city’s retail markets although rice mills owners said that they had already cut the price by Tk 2/3 a kg.
Retailers at the city markets said the price of rice is yet to decrease in the city’s wholesale markets and they were still selling the item at the previous rate.
The price of coarse variety of rice remained unchanged over last one week and the item was selling at Tk 50-54 a kg.
Fine variety of BR-28 rice was selling at Tk 62-65 a kg while fine variety of Miniket rice was being sold at Tk 68-70 a kg on Thursday.
According to statistics of the Trading Corporation of Bangladesh, fine varieties of rice were selling at Tk 65-68 a kg while the coarse varieties of rice at Tk 50-52 a kg.
Maksudur Rahman, a retailer at Mohammadpur Nobodoy kitchen market, on Thursday told New Age that rice was retailing at previous rate as the wholesale price remained unchanged.
‘No new rice entered into the warehouses of wholesalers after the meeting among the government, rice mills owners and importers and we are selling the item at previous price as we bought it with high price,’ Sayed Monirul Islam, proprietor of Barisal Rice Agency at Krishi Market in the city.
He said that mills owners are yet to cut the price of rice and wholesalers are waiting to see how much the price is reduced.
Monirul said that if the price of rice is reduced it will go to market after finishing the current stock and consumers would have to wait for a few days to get the price benefit.
Bangladesh Auto Husking Mills Owners Association secretary KM Layek Ali said that they had reduced the prices of BR-28 rice and Miniket rice by Tk 2/3 a kg but the sale of rice decreased by almost 70 per cent after the meeting with the government.
‘Despite decreasing the price of rice by the mills owners, the consumers would not get benefit as wholesalers started to say that it will take time to finish their current stock,’ he said.
Layek said that the fine variety of Miniket rice was selling at Tk 65/57 a kg at mills gate in last two days whereas the price was Tk 60/61 a kg at mills gate before the meeting with the government.
He, however, said that mills owners had nothing to do about the price of coarse variety of rice as the supply of the item currently depends on the importers.