ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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VEGETABLE OILS-Perverse Policies

THE upsurge in vegetable oil prices has been most disturbing. Edible oil prices have continued to soar despite increased allocation of imported oils to the vanas- pati industry as also under the public distribution system at highly concessional prices, completely belying the government's expectations of a decline in prices as a sequel to reduced demand from the vanaspati industry for indigenous oils, The allocation of imported oils has been progressively stepped up from 10 per cent in December 1986 to 60 per cent for July 1987. Even so, prices have continued to scale new highs. Since the beginning of December, edible oil prices have risen by 25 per cent to over 50 per cent, depending on the oil. Prices of all vegetable oils other than groundnut oil have registered new all- time highs. Over the 12-month period ended July 4, the Economic Times index of wholesale prices shows an increase of 43.5 per cent under oilseeds, 47.6 per cent under vegetable oils and 52 per cent for groundnut oil.

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