Centre to import 1,000 tonnes onions

Centre to import 1,000 tonnes onions

Centre to import 1,000 tonnes onions

With the onion prices staying high despite kharif crop reaching the market, the Centre on Thursday decided to import an additional 1,000 tones of the kitchen staple to boost domestic supply and bring down prices.

Consumer Affairs Minister Ramvilas Paswan reviewed the situation caused due to shortage of onions and gave directions to float yet another global tender for importing 1,000 tonnes to keep the prices under check in view of the upcoming festive season.

Onions were retailing at Rs 70 per kg in Delhi prompting the state government to sell them at subsidised rates. Paswan said the subsidy amount incurred by the Delhi government and Mother Dairy would be reimbursed through the price stabilisation fund set up by the Centre last year.

Consumer Affairs Secretary C Vishwanath said onions have started arriving at wholesale markets from Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka and Rajasthan. The first consignment of 1,000 tonnes onions have landed on Thursday and the commodity is expected to reach the markets soon. The second shipment of 1,000 tonnes is expected to land next month.

Paswan also directed officials to keep a close watch on prices and initiate action promptly, if required.

The state governments have been asked to take measure to check hoarding and control prices.

The prices at Lasalgaon, Asia’s biggest wholesale onion market, are as high as Rs 47-48 per kg while on the retail front, it has increased to Rs 60-70 per kg across the country.

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