Millennium Post

FCI to sell 3 mt wheat in open mkt to ease prices

Food Corporation of India  (FCI) on Friday said it will sell immediately 3 million tonnes (mt) of wheat to bulk consumers in open market in an effort to bring down prices. Last week, the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) had approved sale of 6.5 million tonnes of wheat under open market sale scheme (OMSS) through the tender process.

‘Out of 6.5 million tonnes of wheat approved for OMSS, FCI will immediately release 3 million tonnes for bulk consumers,’ Food Corporation of India (FCI) Chairman C Amarsingh said. A minimum 25,000 tonnes of wheat will be released for smaller states like Himachal Pradesh and a maximum of 1 lakh tonnes of the grain to big states every week, he said.

FCI will issue weekly tenders and the base price will be the MSP and local tax and transportation charges, he added. ‘We will release wheat for tender sale as soon as the quota of one lakh tonnes completes. This will improve supply in the market and suppress prices,’ Amarsingh said.

In June, the CCEA had approved 3.3 million tonnes of wheat under the OMSS. Of which, over 3 million tonnes has already been sold to bulk users. The government has surplus stocks in view of record production last year. The stocks of wheat in the central pool stood at 40.58 million tonnes at the end of October 2012. Besides, due to better support price and good monsoon, the country had harvested a record 93.90 million tonnes of wheat this year.

Inflation declined marginally to 7.45 per cent in October this year.
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