#thenewscompany : Commerce Minister Tipu Munshi today said that there is no bar in importing food grains from Russia and Ukraine as the country can import food grains from these two countries in dollars with support from 24 banks of the world.
The Commerce Minister said this after emerging from a meeting on food import, stock and the problem in importing food grains from Russia and Ukraine held at the Cabinet Division at Bangladesh Secretariat today.
Food Minister Sadhan Chandra Majumder and businessmen of various sectors attended the meeting. Briefing reporters after the meeting, the Commerce Minister said that the meeting discussed two issues — problems in importing food grains from Russia and Ukraine and the overall food stock situation of the country.
“We’ve assured all stakeholders that there is no problem globally while importing food grains from Russia and Ukraine. We can import through dollars. So, there is nothing to worry about,” he added.
Answering a question, Tipu said that efforts are on to boost the export of pharmaceuticals as well as to increase earnings of foreign currency from other sectors. Speaking on the occasion, Food Minister Sadhan Chandra Majumder said that they have discussed the issues relating to comfortable import and comfortable payment methods.
“You’ll see the import of wheat and rice. Various food-friendly programmes including OMS will resume from September 1 across the country. Under the programme, those having TCB cards will be able to buy up to 10kgs of rice at an affordable price. Through showing TCB cards, the consumers will be able to buy TCB items in one queue and OMS rice in another queue.” he added.
The Food Minister also hoped that the price of rice in the kitchen market would come down soon due to such a food-friendly programme. Prime Minister’s Private Industry and Investment Adviser Salman F Rahman said that the meeting discussed issues like the export of pharmaceuticals and import of wheat and fertilizer.
“We have given some recommendations on how to increase the export of pharmaceuticals to Russia and hopefully steps will be taken in this regard”, he said. Salman said the import of food grains and fertilizer remains out of the
purview of the US sanction while there is also no bar on import of fertilizer and pharmaceuticals.
“There is now increased demand for pharmaceuticals in Russia creating new potential for us in exporting pharmaceuticals to that country. Hopefully, pharmaceuticals items can be exported to Russia after addressing some issues like registration,” he added.
When asked about the move on import of fuel oil from India, the Adviser said that the government would import fuel oil from where it would get it at a lesser price. “We’re trying to this end.”