Govt to import food items to check rising prices: Pranab

Govt to import food items to check rising prices: Pranab

"Food prices are going up and this is an area of concern ... we have to take appropriate measures to see what best could be done by augmenting the supply through imports," he told reporters here.

Food inflation soared to a decade's high of 19.95 per cent for the week ended December 5 on rising prices of essential food items like potato, other vegetables and pulses.

The Standing Committee on Finance in its report tabled in Parliament earlier in the day, pulled up the Finance Ministry for not taking timely action to contain inflation and asked the government to put a temporary embargo on essential food items like onions and amend the Essential Commodities Act to check hoarding and speculation.

A host of steps, including zero import duty on wheat, pulses and crude edible oil and allowing imports of various commodities like sugar and rice, have already been taken by the government to tame food prices.

RBI, which had earlier pegged the fiscal-end overall inflation at 5 per cent, revised its forecast to 6.5 per cent and is expected to increase interest rate in January review of its monetary policy.