ISLAMABAD -  An inter-ministerial committee meeting on Tuesday recommended export of 0.6 million tons sugar without giving any subsidy.

The committee headed by Commerce Minister Khurram Dastgir Khan has recommended the Economic Coordination Committee (ECC) to allow further 0.6 million tons exports without giving any subsidy to the exporters. The committee has also suggested that export of sugar would be without making it time-bound.

The inter-ministerial committee meeting considered the recommendations of Sugar Advisory Board (SAB) regarding export of additional 1.2 million tons of sugar. However, the committee approved to export 0.6 million tons sugar. In view of abundant surplus sugar stocks available in the country as reported by Sugar Advisory Board of Ministry of Industries, the committee decided to recommend to the ECC an export of 0.6 MMT of sugar, in addition to the 0.425 MMT already allowed for export, subject to the condition that the price stability in the domestic market is maintained.

The ECC had allowed to exports 0.25 million tons of sugar in December 2016. Later, the ECC allowed an additional export of 0.2 million tons of sugar up to March 31, 2017. The chairman noted with satisfaction that under Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s vision, Ministry of Commerce through judicious regulation has successfully reduced sugar price in the country, which has declined for the first time in Ramazan contrary to the trend during previous years.

“In 2016, the sugar prices reached up to Rs70 in Ramazan but in this holy month the prices are stable around Rs56, which is benefiting the consumers throughout the country and has helped in controlling inflation”, said the minister. The committee was briefed that the sugar price in the domestic market according to the Sensitive Price Index for the week ending June 15, 2017 was 56.30 per kg which was 11.1 percent lower than the level of December 15, 2016 when the export of sugar was allowed by the ECC.

The committee also observed that out of the total quantity of 0.425 million metric tons (MMT) allowed for export by the ECC during the current crop year, a total of 0.391 MMT sugar quota has, so far, been allocated by State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) and around 0.348 MMT has been exported.

In case of any abnormal increase in the domestic price of sugar, the committee would recommend to the ECC the stoppage of further exports. Once 0.45 MMT out of the allowed quantity of 0.6 MMT is exported, the inter-ministerial committee will meet again to review the stock/export situation and recommend enhancement of export quantities, if deemed appropriate.

“In 2016-17, there has been a record sugar production in the history of Pakistan, as well as bumper crops of wheat, maize, and potatoes. The commerce ministry is striving for maximum exports of sugar after fulfilling domestic needs”, Dastgir added.