A report based on prices collected from 200 retail outlets in 116 districts in February 2013
Islamabad, 1 April, 2013: Wheat, onions, spices and cooked food items were among the 21 commodities and services that registered an increase in price during February as compared to January 2013. Twenty-one registered a decrease, while the prices of the remaining 10 remained constant says a Free and Fair Election Network (FAFEN) report released on Monday.
FAFEN governance monitors visited 200 retail outlets in 116 districts across Pakistan in February. They noted a further 3% increase in price of wheat grain. Wheat grain had registered an increase of 8% during the preceding month.
A high increase in prices of spices and condiments was recorded: the price of ginger rose by 10% while garlic’s price went up by 5% because of the sowing season. In vegetables, the onions saw an increase of 8%. The price of cooked items also increased: a plate of vegetables and a plate of beef were all up by 3% each, while the price of plain chappati rose by 1%.
The price of masoor pulse, gram pulse and washed moong were up by 2% each; the price of beef were up by 2% and that of mutton were up by 1%. In dairy products, fresh milk and yoghurt also registered price increase of 1% each.
Region-wise, the price of ginger increased the most in Islamabad Capital Territory (ICT), followed by the Federally Administered Tribal Areas (22%), Balochistan (17%), Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (12%), Punjab (11%) and Sindh (8%). Onion price increased by 11% in Punjab and FATA, followed by KP (7%) and Sindh (5%). Garlic, too, reported a substantial increase in prices in ICT (25%), followed by KP and Sindh (8% each).
Let up in the intensity of winters resulted in reduced prices of farm eggs (24% lower than January) and LPG (10% lower). The prices of farm eggs dropped in all regions with the highest cut reported in Punjab (32%), followed by ICT (29%), Sindh (24%), FATA (20%), KP (19%) and Balochistan (10%). FAFEN observers also recorded a 14% reduction in the prices of tomatoes.
In the medicines and medical services category, FAFEN monitors reported an overall increase of 3% in price of blood sugar test. However, there were great variances between regions. The price of the test went up by 60% in ICT, but fell 2% in Punjab and 4% in KP.
Comparing with the data of Pakistan Bureau of Statistics (PBS) in February 2013, FAFEN Governance Monitors observed higher prices of fewer commodities in eight districts – Rawalpindi, Sialkot, Lahore, Faisalabad, Multan, Hyderabad, Quetta and Bahawalpur. However, in four districts (Gujranwala, Karachi, Peshawar and Khuzdar), PBS observed higher prices of fewer items than those recorded by FAFEN.
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