Intermediaries play foul to hike sugar price as Dashain approaches

Published On: September 8, 2023 08:00 AM NPT By: Republica  | @RepublicaNepal

KATHMANDU, Sep 7: The retail price of sugar has soared to Rs 110 per kg in Kathmandu, following a wholesale price hike to Rs 105 per kg orchestrated by intermediaries within the sugar industry.

This price surge has unfolded just as the festive season approaches, potentially burdening the general public. Almost every year, these intermediaries indulge in foul play to inflate the price of sugar during the festive season, under various pretexts.

These intermediaries have now set their sights on pushing the price of sugar up to Rs 125 per kg by the time of Dashain festival. According to informed sources, a number of sugar mills including Indu Shankar Sugar Mill, Reliance Sugar Mill, Everest Sugar Mill, Himalaya Sugar Mill, and Eastern Sugar Mill had adequate stocks of sugar until mid-August. However, these stocks were procured by the intermediaries at rates ranging from Rs 95 to Rs 97 per kg. Subsequently, they are selling the same sugar in the wholesale market at Rs 105 to Rs 107 per kg.

The private sector warned of a potential shortage of sugar during the festive season. They say that unless the government facilitates sugar imports, the market is bound to experience a steep price hike and shortage of sugar starting from the third week of September. The private sector has urged the government to take diplomatic initiative with India to supply a specific amount of sugar until December.

While concerns of sugar shortage loom and business circles warn of potential scarcity, government agencies remain engaged in discussions on this matter.

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