ISLAMABAD The Ministerial committee on sugar, Thursday, expressed concerns over the smuggling of sugar and gur to other countries and stressed the need for strict implementation of ban on export of the said commodities to check its illegal trade (smuggling). Federal Minister for Industries & Production Mir Hazar Khan Bijarani chaired the Ministerial Committee set up by Economic Coordination Committee (ECC) on sugar here on Thursday. The meeting was apprised of the domestic and imported sugar stocks position and also discussed the prices in the country. Sources told TheNation that the meeting decided that sugar and gur export should be banned till the crisis ended in the country. It is worth-mentioning here that huge quantity of gur is being either smuggled or exported to Afghanistan, which is creating domestic shortage. Cabinet meeting had banned the gur export few months back, however, it continued and the committee on Thursday asked for its implementation. Sources further told that meeting also discusses the high prices of sugar in the country that already went up to Rs90 per kg. Pakistan Sugar Mills Association suggested to import Rs0.5 million tons of raw sugar on immediate basis besides imposing ban on gur export, sources added. The committee also showed satisfaction over the overall stock of the commodity, as total domestic stocks stand at 0.4 million tons and was informed that there would be no shortage of it in the coming months. According to the official statement, Chairman Trading Corporation of Pakistan (TCP) informed that contracts stood awarded for 1.2 million tons; Letter of Credit (LCs) opened for about one million tons. 995,000 MT; total imported actually arrived 417,875 MT; Remaining arrival schedule; September 132,000 MT and 626,875MT in October and November; Stocks Total domestic plus imported 1,136,167 MT, sufficient till December 2010. A sub-committee comprising Secretary Industries and Production, Secretary MINFA, Secretary Finance, Secretary Commerce and Chairman FBR has been formed today (Thursday) to decide within a week the details of the quantity, timing and modus operandi of import of raw sugar and facilitation of private sector for import of white sugar and submit to ECC Ministerial Committee for approval of the ECC to meet the forecasted sugar gap. Cane Commissioner Ministry of Food and Agriculture (MINFA) inter alia apprised the meeting of the details of the post-floods sugar cane crop position and explained that after taking the flood losses into account a gap of around 1.2 million tons equal to last years gap was expected between production and consumption of sugar in 2010-11. The meeting was attended by the Federal Minister for Food and Agriculture, Federal Minister for Commerce, Minister of State for Finance; Federal Secretaries for Industries & Production and Food & Agriculture; Additional Secretary Industries and Production, Finance, Commerce and representatives of Provincial Governments, Federal Board of Revenue, Cane Commissioner MINFA, State Bank of Pakistan, Chairman TCP, Managing Director USC and representatives of PSMA and private sector importers.