‘Government devising strategy to guard marginalised sections against inflationary pressures’


ISLAMABAD: Federal Minister for Planning, Development & Reform & Statistics Division Makhdoom Khusro Bakhtiar on Tuesday said that the government is devising a holistic strategy to guard the marginalised sections of society against inflationary pressures. He stated that general consumers will be empowered by keeping them informed about the prices of key kitchen items.

The minister was chairing a briefing by Statistics Division in Islamabad on Tuesday. Federal Minister for Information Fawad Chaudhry, Federal Minister for Petroleum Ghulam Sarwar, Special Assistant to Prime Minister Iftikhar Durrani, Special Assistant to Prime Minister on Media Affairs Yousaf Baig Mirza, Secretary Planning Zafar Hasan, Dr Sania Nishtar, Secretary Statistics Division Shaista Sohail and senior officials of the ministry were also present in the meeting. On the occasion, Statistics Division secretary briefed the meeting about the process for compiling statistics of essential food items.

The meeting was apprised that inflation in prices of essential kitchen items has been less than 1 per cent since August 2018. The minister asked the Statistics Division to collect real-time data of essential food items in major markets of the country which will then be shared with the consumers. “There is also a need for putting in place a strong price control and checking mechanism to discourage profiteering and hoarding,” the minister added. Makhdoom Khusro also called for formulating a communication strategy to increase awareness among the people about the prices of key edible items, including the airing of price list of main items in the morning shows and regular advertisements in print media.

Speaking on the occasion, Federal Minister for Information Fawad Chaudhry said that the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) government’s policy is not to affect the poor and in this regard, a number of initiatives are being taken to provide relief to the poor.