At Karachi, a ship carrying wheat from Russia docks


KARACHI: As the government worked feverishly to close the supply-demand gap, a ship carrying 60,000 tons of wheat from Russia arrived at Port Qasim and another carrying grain from Ukraine was at the outer anchorage of Karachi port.

Private sector importers claim that one ship, the MV LEVANTES, has anchored at Port Qasim. Local media reports say that two ships carrying Russian wheat docked at the port.

The second vessel, Caravos Liberty, carrying 58,266 tonnes of grain, was close to the port but had not yet docked, according to Karachi Port Trust’s website.

The Ministry of National Food and Security’s announcement that two ships carrying Russian wheat had arrived at the port on Monday and that Pakistan would import 700,000 tonnes of wheat from Russia was also mentioned in media reports.

During FY21, the Trading Corporation of Pakistan (TCP) brought in 1.7 million tonnes of wheat. In order to stabilize prices, the TCP had delivered one million tons to Punjab, 444,935 tons to Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, 117,528 tons to Sindh, and 114,532 tons to Pakistan Agricultural Storage and Services Corporation (Passco) through tenders. This was in accordance with the directive that was issued by the government.

TCP imported 2.23 million tons in FY22, 519,412 of which were delivered to KP and 1.684 million to Passco.

In FY23, Pakistan imported 1.1 million tonnes, worth $460 million, as opposed to 1.02 million tonnes ($340 million) during the same time frame in FY22.

Muzammil Chappal, chairman of the Cereal Association of Pakistan (CAP), recalled that the private sector imported 1.5 million tonnes in FY21 from Ukraine, Germany, Russia, Romania, and other nations.

He added that the government was not paying any attention, despite numerous requests to continue allowing imports to stabilize flour prices.

As the government’s crackdown on hoarders, speculators, and profiteers intensified, there was some respite from rising flour prices.

On Monday, the open market saw the price of a 100 kg wheat bag drop from Rs 13,000 the previous week to Rs 12,000.

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