ISLAMABAD, December 31, 2010: The prices of onion and sugar, which significantly increased during the past few months, considerably decreased in December, 2010.
Nationwide, as many as 17 commodities including potato, onion, sugar, pulses and meat came down by an average of 7% during December as compared to their respective prices in November 2010, says FAFEN’s Retail Price Monitor released here Friday.
FAFEN Governance Monitors collected the prices of 42 commodities and services at specified retail outlets in 136 towns of 83 districts in four provinces.
The price of potato registered the highest decrease of 35% in December as compared to its price in the previous month. Prices of sugar and onion registered a decrease of 28% and 22%, respectively. The decrease in the prices of onion, sugar and potato can be attributed to the start of harvesting season of the respective crops in various parts of the country.
Commodities like mash pulse (7%), garlic (6%), gur, mung pulse, chicken meat and banana (3% each), beef and mutton (2% each) also showed a decrease in price. The price of urine test decreased by 5% in December and a 1% relaxation in the price of kerosene oil was also experienced.
Despite the decrease in prices of many important food commodities, as many as 21 commodities (out of 42 monitored by FAFEN) registered an average price increase of 5% nationwide. Consumers had to pay more for kitchen fuel as the price of Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) and firewood increased by 10% and 3%, respectively. The highest increase was observed in prices of red beans, which increased by 12%. The price of tanoor bread also increased by 3% during December, 2010.
Gram whole, gram pulse and masoor pulse showed respective price increases of 7%, 5% and 2%. Cooked food items also registered increase in their prices. The price of cooked beef plate increased by 6% while cooked pulse plate and vegetable plate reached consumers at 1% higher rates.
Rice prices also registered an increase, as Irri Rice, basmati rice and broken basmati rice were available at 4%, 3% and 2% higher prices, respectively, as compared to the previous month. The prices of egg (5%), red chili (4%) and mustard oil (3%) also showed an increase. Similarly, the price of firewood increased by 3% in the month of December, 2010.
FAFEN compared the data collected by its Governance Monitors with the Sensitive Price Index of Federal Bureau of Statistics (FBS), which revealed differences in prices of many items collected from the same districts. In eight districts, the prices listed by the FBS were higher than FAFEN’s, and in five districts they were lower.
FAFEN is a network of 35 civil society organizations working to foster democratic accountabilities in Pakistan. It is governed by Trust for Democratic Education and Accountability. For more information please visit www.fafen.org.
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