The government on Friday said it expects more companies to reduce maximum retail prices of cooking oils by up to Rs 15 per litre to pass on the benefit of fall in global commodity prices to consumers.
Amid cooking oil prices ruling high in the domestic market, the government on Wednesday directed edible oil companies to reduce the prices.
Following the directive, Mother Dairy, on Thursday, reduced the prices of soyabean and rice bran oil up to Rs 14 per litre. It expects a reduction of MRP of sunflower oil in the next 15-20 days.
Mother Dairy, which is one of the leading milk suppliers in Delhi-NCR, sells edible oils under the Dhara brand.
India meets 60 per cent of its requirement of edible oils through imports.
“Some companies which have not reduced their prices and whose MRP (Maximum Retail Price) is higher than other brands have also been advised to reduce their prices,” the Food and Consumer Affairs Ministry said in a statement on Friday.
Stating that the government is continuously monitoring the prices and availability of edible oils in the country, the ministry said it is imperative that the benefit of reduced duty structure on edible oils and the continuous significant drop in global prices be immediately passed on to the end consumers without fail.
“The consumers can look forward to saving some extra money in their kitchen budget,” it noted.
In the July 6 meeting, the ministry said the manufacturers and refiners were informed that a downward trend in international prices of imported edible oils is a “very positive picture”.
Therefore, the domestic edible oil industry needs to ensure that the prices in the domestic market also drop commensurately. And, this price drop has to be passed on to the consumers expeditiously and not in a “laggard fashion”, it said.
In the July 6 meeting, the manufacturers and refiners were asked to reduce the price of cooking oils sold to distributors immediately so that the price drop is not diluted in anyway, it said.
The ministry said it was also impressed upon the companies that whenever a reduction in price to distributors is made by the manufactures/refiners, the benefit should be passed on to the consumers by the industry.
The issues like price data collection, control order on edible oils and packaging of edible oils were also discussed during the meeting on Wednesday.
During the meeting, the industry had informed that the global prices of different edible oils have fallen by USD 300-450 per tonne in the last one month but it takes time to reflect in the retail markets and the retail prices are expected to come down in the coming days, according to the statement.
In May, Fortune brand had reduced MRP of refined sunflower oil, soyabean oil and kachi ghani oil by Rs 10 per litre after the government directive to manufacturers and refiners to pass on the fall in global edible oil prices to consumers.
According to the ministry, the reduction in edible oil prices came in the wake of a cut in the import duty.
The edible oil prices in the international market are witnessing a dramatic fall, however, the situation in the domestic market is slightly different as the fall in the prices are gradual, it said.
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