KATHMANDU: A high level committee headed by chief secretary Madhav Prasad Ghimire has advised the government to exempt edicle oils from customs duty this festive season. The government has formed the committee including secretaries of Home, Finance, Supply and Agriculture ministries last week to curb the price hike and ensure smooth supply of consumer items.

The committee has advised distributing subsidized sugar from Salt Trading Corporation (STC), National Trading Ltd (NTL) and Nepal Food Corporation (NFC). The government is importing 6,000 MT of sugar from Thailand before Dashain at 1 per cent customs duty. The committee has given a mandate to the Department of Commerce (DoC) to mobilize those public enterprises.

NFC has been selling low cost rice from five mobile shops and plans to intensify the campaign by adding five more vehicles soon. Likewise NTL, which has mobilised 25 mobile shops in Kathmandu and Lalitpur.

The committee has advised the government to mobilize DoC, the local

administration and the

police to monitor the

distribution of sugar.

It has suggested buying the sugar from business outlets if there is under-invoicing and urged the

Ministry of Home and

the Ministry of Local Development to take strong

action against illegal

taxes on the road.

The committee has advised intensifying the inspection mechanism in at the central, district and local levels and provide hotline telephone facility in district administration offices throughout the country. It has directed NFC to purchase 6,000 goats from Lahan, Udayapur, Dang and Nepalgunj and supply these to Kathmandu.