New Delhi: State-run trading firm PEC plans to import 8,000 tonnes of pulses comprising tur, masoor and urad by October as part of government’s efforts to increase domestic availability and keep prices under check.
The company has invited bids for the import plan which closes on 6 September. The imports include 4,000 tonnes of tur (arhar), 3,000 tonnes of masoor (red lentils) and 1,000 tonnes of urad to be delivered at Mumbai port, a PEC official said.
The government had announced in April it would import 15 lakh tonnes of pulses this year to fill the demand-supply mismatch for stabilising the prices of the commodity. It is importing pulses through state-owned agencies — STC, MMTC, PEC and NAFED and subsidising them 15% of their cost on import.
So far, these agencies have contracted to import 10.38 lakh tonnes of pulses, out of which over 2 lakh tonnes have arrived in the country.
PEC has contracted to import about 1.05 lakh tonnes out of which about 50,000 tonnes of pulses have arrived in the country and the remaining will also be delivered soon, he said.
Public sector agencies have now scaled down the import volume after availability of pulses in the domestic market improved leading to softening in prices, sources said.
The current global prices of tur is at around $550 a tonne (Rs22-23 a kg), urad at over $600 (Rs24-25 a kg) and masoor at $650 (Rs26-27 per kg), traders said.
In the domestic wholesale market, tur is being sold at Rs25-26 a kg, urad at Rs24-25 a kg and masoor at Rs30-31 per kg.