Bangladesh will ease onion imports to increase supply

The government of Bangladesh is going to ease the import of onion to help enhance its supply, as a result of a recent surge in the prices pf the product in the domestic market. The decision came as prices of onion shot up by Tk 15-20 a kg just in a week in the country despite the fact that harvest of the crop just ended in Mid-May. Local onion was sold at Tk 55-65 a kg on Wednesday while imported ones at Tk 50-60 a kg.

The state-run trading corporation of Bangladesh (TCB) recorded 34-42 per cent hike in onion prices in a week while 38-69 per cent in a month. The supply of imported onions was very low in the market amid the government's unofficial restriction on issuing 'import permit'(IP) since the beginning of seasonal onion harvest in the country in February, said traders.

A commerce ministry senior official told the FE that importers would now get IP if they apply for. He told the government's top priority was to stabilize the essential market during this pandemic. He said the harvest had ended as well as primary trading of onion by farmers has also been completed in the county.

This year, Bangladesh is expecting 2.9-million tons of onion output, which is more than its demand for 2.6-million tons, according to the Ministry of Agriculture. Onion production was an all-time high of 2.0-million tons last year. The rest of the demand was met through imports from Egypt, Turkey, Myanmar, China, Pakistan and India.

[ Tk 100 = €0,97 ]


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