Commerce Minister Tipu Munshi on Wednesday said one of the reasons for the recent increase in commodity prices is that a class of unscrupulous traders are taking advantage of the fuel oil price hike.
"A class of unscrupulous traders look for opportunities," he said in response to questions from reporters at a press conference at the secretariat in the city.
Giving an example of the price of rice to explain what he meant, Tipu said, "Due to the increase in the price of fuel oil, the price of rice should increase by 50 paisa per kg. But it has increased by Tk 4 per kg. They made use of the opportunity."
He said that the ministry is monitoring the market and hopes that the price will be under control by October.
Besides, regarding the unusual increase in the price of eggs, he said, "If the price can be reduced by importing eggs, we can do that too, if necessary."
He said that no decision has been taken yet on fixing the price of edible oil and a decision will be taken later.
"Global oil prices are falling, and dollar price is increasing. The price will be fixed by coordinating these two," Tipu Munshi said.
The press conference was organised to explain the ministry's stand on the irregularities in the report of Transparency International Bangladesh (TIB) regarding the distribution of subsidised family cards distributed by the Trading Corporation of Bangladesh (TCB).
Regarding the TIB report, Tipu said there could be at most 5 percent irregularities. "There is no denying this fact. But we managed to reach 95 percent of people," he added.
Tipu Munshi pointed out several weaknesses in the TIB report.
He said that although one crore people were given food at subsidised prices, TIB's sample size was only 1047 people.
Commerce Secretary Tapan Kanti Ghosh, who was present at the press conference, said that the representation of TIB is not correct.