The upward trend of rice price continues in the local markets with no indication to slide.
The price of the staple food is expected to fall as soon as the Vietnamese rice arrives, Food Minister Qamrul Islam said while taking to the Dhaka Tribune recently.
“A 2,50,000-tonne of rice from Vietnam would arrive within July 10-12. However, TV reports show that rice price has gone down by about Tk2 to Tk3 in the local market.”
But visiting different kitchen markets across the capital, it was observed that rice price did not come down, rather the price of some varieties of rice increased.
A kilogramme of coarse rice was being sold at between Tk47 and Tk54 while fine rice Tk56 and Tk62, and Chinigura, a variety of rice, Tk95 and Tk100 at different groceries in the capital on Tuesday.
Before Eid, the price of coarse rice was ranging between Tk46 and Tk52 while fine rice from Tk55 to Tk60 and Chinigura rice from Tk90 to Tk95 a kilogramme in the markets.
According to the state-run Trading Corporation of Bangladesh (TCB) which tracks the prices of daily necessities, the prices of coarse rice and fine ones have shot up to 2% from 1%.
Abu Quasem, a wholesaler at Karwanbazar in the capital, said the price of rice won’t decrease till the imported rice arrives.
“Probably, we can get the rice in the market within one and a half months.”
“We can do nothing if the prices go up at source. We buy the rice at higher price from storehouses and sell it to retailers keeping a little profit.”
Tanjimul Alam, an employee of a private firm, said: “We have to buy rice despite its soaring price since we cannot but eat rice. However, we are looking to the government decision after the rice from Vietnam comes.”
Earlier, Finance Minister AMA Muhith said the import of rice would cool prices in the local market. He said the Vietnamese rice would reach Chittagong and Mongla ports shortly.
The Ministry of Food website on Tuesday showed that rice reserves stood at 1.50 lakh metric tonnes. The private sector imported 133.02 thousand tonnes of rice in between July 01, 2016 and June 30, 2017, but the government import was at zero.
Earlier from July 1, 2015 to June 30, 2016, the government imported 1.28 thousand tonnes of rice while private sector 255.96 thousand tonnes.
Naogaon Rice Mills Association president Nirab Baron Shaha said buyers don’t come here to buy rice. They go to India to import.
The mills are yet to open after Eid vacation. Perhaps, it would open within one week, he said, adding that, “We used to sell medium-size rice at over Tk2,000 while fine rice at Tk2,500 per 50 Kg.”