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Montek for higher imports, effective PDS to tame food prices

Last Updated: Monday, October 5, 2009 - 21:23

New Delhi: Concerned over rising food prices, Planning Commission Deputy Chairman Montek Singh Ahluwalia on Monday pitched for increasing supplies through imports and better use of the public distribution system.

"We are very concerned about that (high food prices) and
we need to ensure through measures to increase supplies ...
supplementing domestic supplies by imports wherever possible
and through better effective functioning of PDS" he told
reporters here.

On the overall inflation rate, Ahluwalia hoped it would
remain within the comfortable 5 per cent level as the drought
situation is not as grim as was anticipated.

Pointing out that food prices are higher than they should
be, he said, "the drought is not as bad as was once thought.
So speculative pressure, which may have let to somewhat higher
prices will slowly begin to ease."

The general inflation turning positive after remaining in
the negative for about 13 weeks was not a problem, he said,
adding "it is well below the comfort level...it will remain
within the comfort level during this financial year."

Although the Reserve Bank expects the inflation to touch
5 per cent by the end of the current fiscal, several other
think tanks have warned that it might climb to around 8 per
cent by March 2010.

Bureau Report



First Published: Monday, October 5, 2009 - 21:23
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