Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Commodity News Snapshot-Pakistan

Despite finalisation of sugar import contracts a month ago, the Trading Corporation of Pakistan (TCP) has been unable to open Letter of Credit (LC) for import of 105,000 tons of sugar because of shortage of funds. Sources told Business Recorder on Tuesday that at present the corporation is facing acute shortage of some Rs 4 to 5 billion to open LC of the last tender.

In less than a month's time, the price of sugar has been increased by Rs 5 per kilogram at the wholesale market in the provincial capital. Two weeks ago, the price of a 50-kilogram sack of sugar was Rs 3,840, which is now being sold at Rs 4,030. Similarly, sugar was being sold at Rs 76 per kg in the wholesale market and has mounted to Rs 81 per kg.

Although, the country is already facing shortage of sugar due to low production of sugarcane crop last year, the provinces seem reluctant to announce the minimum support price for the crushing season 2010-11, which according to Sugarcane Factories Act 1950 should commence from October 1.

Punjab food department has asked the flourmills of Lahore and Rawalpindi to lift the major portion of their allotted wheat quota from the godowns situated in nearby cities at their own expense.

KARACHI: Without any plausible reason wheat prices have surged in the open market of Karachi in the post-Eidul Fitr period creating apprehension among consumers regarding increase in flour rates during the next few days.

All-round decline was seen on the currency market on Tuesday as a result of higher demand for the US dollars, dealers said. All the markets reopened after a 4-day closure, including banks, so the rupee was able to retain its outgoing week level versus dollar and euro, losing modestly in both interbank and open market, analysts said.

KARACHI (September 15, 2010): While expressing his views in connection with the damage to the cotton crop as a result of floods, M. Yasin Siddik, Chairman APTMA Sindh-Balochistan Region said that before the floods Pakistan was expecting a bumper crop of 14 million bales compared to 12.8 million bales produced last year.

Upward trend was seen on the cotton market on Tuesday during the post-holidays session, dealers said. The Karachi Cotton Association (KCA) official spot rate was jumped by Rs 150 to Rs 6,550, they said. In the ready business, prices went up sharply and nearly 6,600 bales of cotton changed hands between Rs 6600-6750, they said.

Crops over more than six million acres in 11 districts of the Punjab province have been damaged by the flood and a loss of more than Rs 87 billion has been suffered. This has been informed at a meeting chaired by the Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif here on Tuesday to review a proposed relief package for the growers who suffered losses due to the flood.

Sindh government has estimated Rs 446.8 billion damages to agriculture and infrastructure in the province by the devastating floods. The provincial government would provide interest-free loans to the flood-hit people of severely affected districts for agricultural rehabilitation. So far the provincial government has disbursed some Rs 2 billion in flood-hit areas of the province to provide food and medical treatment to the survivors.

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