Utility Stores Corporation (USC) has raised the prices of several commodities in its stores around the country, reported by a private news channel.
According to a notification, prices of branded tea, milk, tea whitener, spices, honey and other items have been increased by the government. The price of 90 grams of branded tea has increased by Rs400, taking the official prices from Rs905 to Rs1305.
Similarly, the price of tea whitener has increased by Rs100, the price of 200-gram dates has been jacked up by Rs40, the price of baby dry milk supplement has increased by Rs260, and the price of 1kg pickle packet raised by Rs84.
Meanwhile, USC has also increased the prices of oats, cereal, noodles, and other food items. The price of 100 grams of red chilies has been increased by Rs84, the price of hot spice mixture has been jacked up by Rs42 and the price of a 300-gram jar of honey has risen by Rs100.
The notification also mentioned that the prices of other commodities such as custard, black pepper, jams, and beverages have also been raised.
ملک بھر کے تمام یوٹیلیٹی سٹورز پر ڈیمانڈ اینڈ سپلائی کی بہتری کیلئے اور برانڈڈ اشیاء کی بلا تعطل فراہمی کو یقینی بنانے کیلئے کچھ برانڈڈ اشیاء کی قیمتوں میں اضافہ کیا گیا ہے،تاہم یہ اضافہ برانڈڈ کمپنیوں کی طرف سے ہے۔ pic.twitter.com/P9xs1ORDVw
— Utility Stores Corporation of Pakistan (@UtilityStoresCo) September 2, 2022
According to the Pakistan Bureau of Statistics, Consumer Price Index (CPI)-based inflation in Pakistan soared past 27 percent on a year-on-year basis as compared to an increase of 24.9 in the previous month and 8.4 percent in August 2021.
Government’s response on rising prices
Finance Minister Miftah Ismail was repentant on the rapid increase in prices. He admitted that inflation rate has touched the highest point in the history. The minister explained his point that these measures were essential to be taken, otherwise the country would have defaulted within two months.
“Till the time I am the Finance Minister, I will not let the country face default,” Miftah Ismail added.
Is repentance all that the government can do for the huge economic problems the public is going through?
The harsh consequences of current government’s policies are emerging at micro as well as macro levels. Neither in present nor in future any leniency for the citizens is expected from the authorities.
Since last couple of months, meeting the basic needs has become extremely challenging for the lower and middle-income segments of the population. Flash floods have added to the misery as one-third of the country is drowning. These have caused massive destruction to the crops and infrastructure in addition to the lives of people. Destroying of crops have led to massive increase in prices of several food items especially onions, tomatoes, and wheat. As a result, severe food shortages are expected in coming days.