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Dhaka Tribune

Onion prices sky high again

Update : 03 Dec 2013, 09:32 PM

The supply shortage due to the ongoing political unrest has pushed the prices of onion up by Tk15 only in a single day.

On Tuesday, local onion sold at Tk115 and imported onion at Tk105 per kg in Dhaka’s kitchen markets, which was at Tk100 and Tk90 on Monday.

The onion price soared Tk35 in just four days since Friday.

“Supply of onions at Karwan Bazaar, the city’s biggest wholesale market, came down by 35% to 40% as the political violence hit the transportation system badly in the recent time,” Mubarak Ali, a wholesaler told the Dhaka tribune. While the fare of a truck has been nearly doubled that pushed the prices up sharply, he added.

He said truckers are not willing to ply vehicles during strike or hartal as they have faced several incidents of arson in goods laden covered vans or trucks.

In the last week, local onion sold at Tk60 per kg, which rose to Tk115 on Tuesday, said Piarul Islam, an office attendant of TK Group, who came to shop at Karwan Bazzar. The poor people like me have to cut the onion from the menu of kitchen market as it has gone beyond our reach, he added.

Meanwhile, prices of some essentials including gourds, green chilli, newly arrived potatoes went up by Tk5-15, while other vegetables including cauliflowers, beans, brinjals and poptatoes remain almost same compared to the previous day.

As of on Tuesday, gourds sold at Tk70 per piece, green chilli at Tk45, new potatoes Tk50 per kg.

“We are very much scared about the supply chain as the political stalemate did not show any sign of easiness,” a wholesaler at the Karwan Bazzar told Dhaka Tribune.

They urged the government and the opposition leaders to come on a consensus for the sake of country’s common peoples well as the economy. Rustom Ali, president of Bangladesh Covered Van and Truck Owners’ Association, said transport fare rose sharply to Tk40,000 to Tk50,000, which was Tk12,000 to Tk15,000, making business difficult.

“We have called a meeting on Thursday to devise ways to overcome the deadlock situation,” he added.

“In normal situation, it costs Tk15,000 Tk17,000 per truck to carry the onion, but during the blockade it costs about Tk40,000 to Tk45,000 during blockade or hartal, which are mainly responsible for unusual hike of onion prices,” said Alim Howlader, a store keeper at Karwaan bazaar.

Currently, the Trading Corporation of Bangladesh has no open market sale as the prices of onion came down to a tolerable level. But now it has jumped due to political unrest, which broken the supply chain, said Humayun Kabir, public relation officer of TCB.

“We are observing the market prices and would take the decision if it goes up beyond the reach of commoners,” he added.  

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