PPP, PML-N start trading charges on sugar price issue

ISLAMABAD  -  Erstwhile allies, the Pakistan Peo­ple’s Party (PPP) and the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N), yes­terday traded allegations putting the blame on each other for the hike in sugar price in the country.

PML-N Ahsan Iqbal, the former Planning Minister, blamed PPP’s Nav­eed Qamar for the recent hike in sug­ar price in Pakistan. Qamar was the Commerce Minister in the recent co­alition government led by the PML-N.

Iqbal lashed out at Naveed Qamar for exporting sugar. He claimed that Naveed Qamar had permitted the ex­port of sugar and PML-N could not be blamed for the hike in sugar price as the decisions were taken by the coali­tion government. Later, Naveed Qamar defended his decision of exporting sug­ar saying that Pakistan had addition­al sugar “that’s why sugar export was allowed. The sugar crisis will not end until the smuggling and hoarding is stopped.” PPP leader Senator Taj Haider also supported Naveed Qamar saying he allowed official export of 250,000 tons sugar to help then Finance Minister Ish­aq Dar with some foreign exchange.

“Rana Sanaullah (former Interior Min­ister) had allowed 1.4 million tons sug­ar to be smuggled. Dollars were earned by smugglers. But Ahsan Iqbal holds Naveed Qamar were responsible,” he said on X platform.

Earlier, sugar prices hiked up to an all-time high in Karachi to Rs 195 per ki­logram as weekly inflation continues to accelerate. Sugar is being sold between Rs 185 to Rs 195 per kilogram in Kara­chi’s retail market, while the rate in the wholesale market decreased to Rs 178 per kg from Rs 180.

Despite the decrease in the wholesale market price of sugar, the retailers are selling the same at their desired rate. In a statement, Rauf Ibrahim, Chairman Wholesale Grocers Association, said that the sugar mafia and hoarders cre­ated an ‘artificial shortage’ of sweetener and reduced its supply into the market.

The Ministry of Commerce and Indus­tries has ruled out the shortage of sugar in Pakistan. The clarification came after claims that Pakistan is seeking to im­port sugar from Brazil.

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