Urea price fluctuations in Pakistan

| Foreign Markets |

The Pakistani market has been divided following the increase of a tax whose proceeds are used to develop natural gas infrastructure. Some local urea manufacturers suffer, while the importers benefit from the change.

Prices must rise as well

Following long negotiations, the Pakistani government obtained the permission from the Supreme Court to raise Gas Infrastructure Development Cess (GIDC), an excise tax which is collected to finance the construction of the domestic part of the gas pipeline connecting Pakistan and Iran. Once the tax increase came into force, the local urea manufacturers were faced with a 10% increase of the manufacturing cost.

Was there any alternative?

The current situation is the most favorable for urea importers, who benefit from government subsidies, but resell at a market price. Therefore, the Pakistani fertilizer manufacturers have appealed to the government both to stop GIDC increases, and to decrease the budget subsidies for the imported urea. This would result in the intensification of domestic production of this fertilizer, thus boosting the revenue of the Pakistani treasury.

 

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Americans will support Pakistani agriculture

| Foreign Markets |

On September 11th, representatives of the American Embassy and a delegation of Pakistani Ministry of Research and Food Safety met in Islamabad. The meeting concerned such issues important for Pakistan as scientific support for agriculture in the country and exportation of agricultural produce to USA.

Pakistani government is open to US assistance in activities promoting the development of domestic farming. One valuable area of cooperation is the use of American FMD (Foot-and-mouth disease) control program, another is having Asian scientists visit US for joint research on improving the efficiency of crops.

The participants of the meeting also discussed the issues of stimulating and development of agricultural exports (mainly of mango fruit) to USA, as well as the participation of a Pakistani delegation at a conference on biotechnology organized this year by US Department of Agriculture.

Asian farming is one of the fastest-growing in the world. Pakistan is among the top 10 wheat manufacturers in the world. Also, it is the 6th most populated country in the world with over 182 million inhabitants. This explains why the dynamic growth of agriculture and improvements of crop efficiency are essential for the country.

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