Eggs to be imported if necessary to rein in price hike: Commerce minister

Commerce minister Tipu Munshi
File Photo

Commerce minister Tipu Munshi on Sunday said traders will be given permission to import eggs in coordination with the fisheries and livestock ministry if the prices of eggs cannot be contained.

The minister said this in response to queries from newsmen after inaugurating sale of essential commodities at subsidised prices by the state-run Trading Corporation of Bangladesh (TCB) for 10 million family cardholders, in the Town Hall market of the capital’s Mohammadpur.

The commerce minister said the fisheries and livestock ministry will fix the prices of eggs and markets will be monitored through conducting raids by the Directorate of National Consumer Rights Protection.

As the egg markets turn volatile all of a sudden, the Directorate of National Consumer Rights Protection are conducting raids at various warehouses in the capital and fined the traders, he added.

Tipu Munshi said the commerce ministry cannot import eggs if it wants as the import of eggs requires permission of the fisheries and livestock ministry, and there is no option to import eggs without their cooperation.

The minister expects a decision will come soon on this matter, and an initiative will be taken to import eggs once a green signal of the fisheries and livestock ministry is received.

In response to a query, Tipu Munshi said sugar is imported from international markets, and purchased from local markets because imported sugar arrives late many times, and unloading of sugar is delayed at ports due to various complications, resulting in a shortage of supply.

So, sugar is procured from local markets in addition to international markets, he added.

Replying to a query on import of essential from India under quota, commerce ministry said he will visit India this month and hold meeting with his Indian counterpart, and then a decision will be made on this matter.