May 20, 2024, 12:31 am

Coarse rice, flour prices reach record high in last 5 years

  • Update Time : Monday, April 22, 2024
  • 17 Time View
Photo: Collected

Desk Report:

The rising prices of essential commodities are making life increasingly difficult for people, especially those from low- to middle-income groups.

According to the government’s Food Planning and Monitoring Committee (FPMC), the price of coarse rice has increased by more than 56 percent in the country in the last five years. And during this period the price of loose flour increased by 57 percent. Low-income people are in trouble due to the increase in the price of these two main foods.

According to the government’s Food Planning and Monitoring Committee (FPMC), the average price of coarse rice in March 2020 in the country was 31 taka 46 paisa, which increased to 49 taka 11 paisa last March. The price of rice has increased continuously in these five years. The price of loose flour was also discussed in the meeting. It is reported that the average price of loose flour in March 2020 was Tk 27 per kg, which increased to 43 taka last March.

Last year the price of loose flour was higher, around 59 taka per kg. The price of the product has decreased compared to last year but is still 57 percent higher than in 2020.

For the current financial year 2023-24, the Ministry of Agriculture has set a target of 4 crore 34 lakh tonnes of rice production. According to the estimates obtained for two seasons, the production of Aush last season was about 3 million tons. According to Aman’s provisional estimate, about 1.66 million tonnes of rice has been produced, which is 1.2 million tonnes more than last season.

Rice and flour are the main food of the people of the country. When the price of rice is high, the price of flour is also high. Although the price of wheat in the world market has come down to the level of 2020. Even in Russia and Ukraine, the two sources of wheat imports to Bangladesh, wheat prices are lower than in March 2020.

A Bangladesh Institute of Development Research (BIDS) study in 2022 showed that a very poor person spends 32 percent of his expenditure on rice. In the case of poor people, this rate is 29 percent. Apart from this, a person who is not poor spends one-fifth of his expenditure on buying rice.

People are given food assistance at low cost through various government programs. But economists think that it is less than the demand. On the other hand, wages are rising at a slower rate than inflation. It means that the purchasing power of working people has decreased.

Khandaker Golam Moazzem, director of research at the non-governmental organization Center for Policy Dialogue (CPD), told the media that rice and flour are two important products. If its price increases, the low-income as well as the middle-income people are under pressure.

He said that inflation is increasing more than wages are increasing. As a result, many can’t meet the expenses even with additional income.

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