ISLAMABAD  -   Representatives of fertilizer industry on Tuesday raised their concerns regarding the proposed amendments in the Gas Infrastructure Development Cess (GIDC) Act, 2015 and its implementation. They asked for increasing the prices of fertiliser due to proposed amendments in GIDC Act 2015. The hike of 62 percent in feed gas and 31 percent in fuel gas price to fertilizer industry was made effective from July 1, 2019 by the government. This substantial increase in gas price has had a 12 percent incremental effect on urea prices as gas is the main raw material of urea. In rupees, the increase in urea price is Rs 210 per bag. To keep urea prices at affordable level, the fertilizer companies agreed to absorb Rs100 per bag on account of envisaged impact of GIDC settlement of 50 percent, but kept waiting for the formal announcement from the government.

Adviser to Prime Minister on Commerce, Textile, Industries & Production and Investment, Abdul Razak Dawood chaired a meeting of the FRC to deliberate on the current state of demand and supply of fertilizer in the market to avoid any increase in price by the fertilizer industry. It was attended by the representatives of all the relevant public and private stakeholders including FFC, and Fertilizer Manufacturers Association of Pakistan (FMPAC). The meeting discussed the various policy options to provide relief to the farmers by ensuring availability of agriculture inputs including fertilizers at affordable prices in order to boost the production of the agri crops.

The Adviser also appreciated the resolve and cooperation demonstrated by the fertilizer industry in order to ensure the provision of relief to the farmers. The Adviser reiterated that current government was cognizant to the issues being faced by the farmers and committed to address the same on priority basis. The agriculture sector is playing significant role in the economy of country and provides employment to more than half of the populations, he added. The Adviser assured them that the matter would be taken up with Ministry of Petroleum & Natural Resources to find viable solution. Moreover, he urged the public and private sector to enhance mutual cooperation to resolve the issues to achieve the envisioned economic goals of incumbent government.