ISLAMABAD: Finance Minister Shaukat Tarin on Monday directed tax authorities to expeditiously release refunds to importers of edible oil importers.
He issued the directive at a meeting with a delegation of Pakistan Vanaspati Manufacturers Association (PVMA).
The finance minister directed the chairman of Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) to assure expeditious disbursement of refunds to the importers of vegetable ghee/oil to ensure availability of funds.
Federal Minister for Industries and Production Makhdoom Khusro Bakhtiar, SAPM on Finance and Revenue Dr. Waqar Masood, Secretary M/o Industries and Production, Chairman FBR and other senior officers participated in the meeting.
While welcoming the Chairman PVMA, the Finance Minister expressed his concern over the rise in the prices of edible oil/ghee in domestic markets over the period of time.
The Chairman PVMA briefed the Finance Minister about the international hike in prices of palm and soyabean oils particularly during ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. The international prices kept fluctuating between the range of $1100 – 1257 per ton and the domestic market drives rates from the prevailing international prices and the dollar value.
The exchange rate also has a significant impact on edible oil prices in the country, he added.
While taking stock of the situation, the Finance Minister urged PVMA to adopt market-based solutions and bring down prices in the domestic market in line with the international price trend.
If there is a slight dip in the international market, it must be reflected in the domestic prices so that the consumers get relief amid highly fluctuating edible oil market.
The finance minister stressed the need to evaluate the whole situation rationally and urged PVMA to come up with sustainable pricing mechanism in collaboration with the Ministry of Industries & Production and FBR.
He constituted a committee comprising representatives of PVMA, Secretary Ministry of Industries and Production and Chairman FBR to workout arrangement for streamlining collection of sales tax and a predictable pricing formula. The Chairman PVMA assured full cooperation in providing maximum relief to the domestic consumers by absorbing international pressure on prices in the edible oil sector.