Rising palm oil import prices aggravate Pakistan’s trade deficit problems

December 30, 2021 11:52 p.m. STI

Islamabad [Pakistan], Dec 30 (ANI): Rising palm oil import prices have compounded Pakistan’s trade deficit problems as it tries to cope with rising inflation and its dependence on oil. regard to external lending increases.
Edible oil is a staple food in Pakistan and 80-90% of its total demand is met by palm oil imported from Indonesia and Malaysia, according to the Daily Times.
According to estimates by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), the per capita consumption of cooking oil in Pakistan is 24 kg. Palm oil imported into Pakistan is used to make a range of products like vanaspati ghee, chocolates, soap and various baked goods.
In addition, a developing country like Pakistan, with a fragile economy that is overly dependent on international aid and conditional programs from the International Monetary Fund (IMF), has been affected in many directions.
In addition, the inflation rate is skyrocketing and electricity is becoming more and more expensive while gas must be rationed.

Palm oil importers and the Pakistan Vanaspati Manufacturers Association (PVMA) have been very vocal about the recent increase in the import price of edible oils, especially palm oil, in the market, according to the Daily Times.
On top of that, a record increase in fuel prices has hit the common man in Pakistan from all sides, making it a huge task to meet day-to-day expenses, with the issue of food security becoming more and more serious.
Market sources predict that the country’s food import bill will rise further in the current fiscal year 2021-22 compared to last year. This is evident from the figures for the July-September quarter, which increased by 66.11% to 18.74 billion dollars against 11.28 billion dollars in the corresponding months of last year.
Imports of edible oils have also seen a substantial increase in quantity and value, according to the Daily Times.
According to the news coming out, negotiations between the government and industry players are still inconclusive as the rupee-dollar parity rises and to streamline duties and taxes on the import of edible oil, especially l palm oil, which accounts for 90% of the total. imports.
The government will be forced to take action to modify the trade agreements signed with Indonesia and Malaysia for preferential treatment with regard to the export of palm oil to Pakistan.
If these corrective measures are not taken, the middle and lower segments of the population will remain under economic pressure unabated. But for now, there is not enough light at the end of the economic tunnel, according to the Daily Times. (ANI)

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