Pakistan News

SBP: rising inflation

SBP: rising inflation

THIS refers to the news item ‘Interest rate kept unchanged’ (July 26). State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) Governor Ashraf Mahmood Wathra stated that, following the declining trend in nearly every month of 2015, the average CPI inflation came down from 8.6pc in July FY14 to 4.5pc in June, FY15. I wonder if the governor is really aware of ground realities.

For instance, in January 2015, I bought a cotton kurta-shalwar suit for Rs1,700 from an outlet. Last week, I again visited the shop and found the same suit with a price tag at Rs3,600. Similar is the position of female apparels which cost about Rs2,000 to Rs3,000 at the same outlet and are now being sold at Rs7,000 to Rs9,000 per suit.

Water tankers, which were available in Karachi for Rs1,500 to Rs2,000 despite a cut in petroleum prices, are being sold at Rs4,000 to Rs5,000 per tanker. Bigger tankers are being sold at still higher prices for Rs7,000 to Rs8,000.

There is a long list of consumer items in the category of price spirals, impacting common folks adversely.

The governor’s decision to cut interest rates has further hit the common man of fixed income groups as returns on their hard-earned savings or monetary assets have significantly come down.

I would, therefore, suggest to the governor to have firsthand ground realities and make realistic assessments.

S. Israr Ali


Published in Dawn, August 17th, 2015

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