Our agreement with the IMF was broken, and world oil prices were skyrocketing. Due to the incompetence of the previous government, we could not buy the cheapest gas.
The production of wheat was less than our demand, currently, billions of dollars worth of wheat is being imported, Pakistan spent 27 billion dollars on oil which was the biggest expenditure of the year. In order to make Pakistan stand on its own feet, we have to show our own courage and spirit of sacrifice and self-sacrifice.
Undoubtedly, Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif’s acceptance of inflation is a sad fact that he not only understands the seriousness of the situation, but is also fully aware of the problems of the people and is also willing to improve it, but the financial problems are so great. They say that running the economy at full speed is like gambling.
The political deadlock has increased so much in the country that the economy has also been made a victim of political strife. The provincial governments are trying their best to put all the responsibility for the economic crisis and inflation on the federal government. Punjab, the largest province of the country, is governed by PTI and Q-League, while in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, PTI is ruling with a huge numerical majority.
These governments and the PTI leadership are opposing decisions made regarding the economy for political point-scoring to humiliate the federal government, which is also causing uncertainty.
Under the Eighteenth Amendment, most of the powers have been transferred to the provinces, so where the federation is responsible for the issue of inflation, even the provinces cannot deny their responsibility, especially to keep the prices of daily use items stable, to regularize the wholesale markets, etc. Monitoring and creating a foolproof mechanism is also the responsibility of the provincial government and it also has powers.
Vegetable and fruit markets, slaughterhouses, cattle markets, cold storage, etc. are all under the jurisdiction of the provincial governments. There are also price control committees in the provinces, but despite this, disorder and lawlessness prevail everywhere.
All the responsibility lies in malfeasance, negligence, bribery, and abuse of power by government officials. Go to the vegetable markets and fruit markets, there is no sanitation system. No discipline exists. Chartis rule while the status of the farmer is no more than a customer.
Another major cause of inflation in Pakistan is ‘cartelization’
The major cause of inflation in Pakistan is ‘cartelization’, like cement, sugar, and milk manufacturing and packaging companies have their own cartel and this cartel fixes the agency and retail price of their products, here Govt. is a mere spectator or levies tax on these manufactures and producers, the interests of the consumer are not protected.
Cartels are so powerful that they are able to dictate the laws themselves, thus providing legal protection to their illegal profiteering while the end user is helpless and constrained. The state does nothing for his rights.
More than 90 percent of the country’s sugar mills are owned by powerful political families, which is why they receive subsidies from the public treasury, import sugar when they want to, and export when they need to. don’t be
For this reason, sometimes there is a shortage of sugar and sometimes it becomes abundant. This is also a major reason for the current inflation.
Petroleum products are used to generate electricity in Pakistan, it will not be wrong to say that we also import electricity. The previous governments did not pay attention to the construction of dams to generate electricity, but continued to oppose the construction of dams and are now making noise about inflation.
One of the main reasons for the increase in the value of the dollar is Afghanistan. The former government unduly supported the Taliban government of Afghanistan, loosening border controls, allowing grain and dollars to be smuggled into Afghanistan, when it realized it was too late. Pakistan’s biggest import bill is petroleum products.
From 2014 to 2018, oil prices in the world were at extremely low levels. This option could have been used to pay off the country’s debt and generate cheap electricity, while they burdened the country’s economy with more debt, the price of which is being paid today.
The Ministry of Food Security has stated that the country is facing a shortage of 4.5 lakh tonnes of wheat, while the influential farmers have stored 4 million tonnes of wheat and according to the report, the hoarders have made an additional profit of Rs 30 billion in two months, while The Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government has failed to stop the smuggling of wheat and 6 lakh tons of wheat has been smuggled into Afghanistan. The wheat crisis has intensified across the country, people are worried about flour, mill owners and farmers have all five fingers in ghee. Profiteers and hoarders are earning billions of rupees.
Actually controlling the prices is the primary responsibility of the district administration, but they think that they have given relief to the people by only issuing press releases and price lists of food items. The Information Ordinance was issued, under which the persons involved in unjustified inflationary hoarding or admixture can be punished with imprisonment for six months, fine or both.
Vegetables and fruits are being sold at exorbitant prices across the country, the main reason for this being a character found in our system, who seem to be making illegal profits in the markets without anyone asking.
There should be direct purchase from the farmers at the village level and a mechanism should be developed for this purpose, government rates should also be set for the arhattis to save the farmer from looting.
The rate of buying and selling of Aadhati should be fixed, in this way the shopkeeper will also be able to sell the goods at the fixed rate and if he does not do so, legal action against him will also be considered permissible. In this way, the documentation of the economy will also be done and stability will come in the market, the revenue of the provincial and district governments will increase.
Along with this, the government is bound to keep the markets clean and take measures for the convenience of buyers and sellers there. What more can the people do when their elected representatives are indifferent to the daily problems of their citizens, especially the looting in the name of inflation due to self-inflicted price hike of food items.
The irony is that the district governments issue a daily price list of their own fixed food prices, but fail miserably to implement it.
Any vegetable, fruit and retailer or meat seller hangs a price list and charges double the price of the goods, then no customer has the courage to refuse to pay the price according to the official price list to the seller. Even if someone objects, he gets a rude and rude reply that he should go and buy from the place where the price list was issued. The problem is not only with today’s government, this series of looting and illegal profiteering has continued in every era.
If the government wants the benefit of its reduction in the prices of petrol and electricity to reach the poor people, it will have to make special arrangements for monitoring and arresting looters, for which a new law will be introduced. There is no need, by strictly enforcing the existing regulations, the people can at least be saved from self-inflation under the guise of profiteering.