Kathmandu, September 9
Targeting upcoming festive season, the government has opened 73 fair price shops across the country today.
The fair price shops are being operated under the supervision of Salt Trading Corporation, Dairy Development Corporation and Food Management and Trade Company, according to Yogendra Gauchan, director general of Department of Commerce, Supply and Consumer Protection.
As per him, STC is operating a total of 35 such outlets, including three mobile
outlets, while Food Management and DDC are operating 23 and 15 shops, respectively within and outside the Valley.
Talking to The Himalayan Times, Gauchan said, “Addressing the federal system of the country this year, we have tried to set up fair price outlets in major markets of all seven provinces,” he said.
Accepting the reality of failing to set up fair price shops in all districts,
Gauchan said that in future the government will be expanding such shops to all districts. “STC and DDC are profit-oriented companies. Moreover, both the companies do not have a large network across the country for large scale service,” he explained, adding, “That is why we are unable to set up outlets in many places.”
He, however, said that the government is trying to expand the area of Food Management and Trade Company that was recently formed by merging Nepal Food Corporation and National Trading Ltd.
“Though we were unable to set up outlets in all districts, the number of fair price outlets this year is higher,” Gauchan said. “Last year we had set up fair price shops in 47 places across the country and will gradually increase their number.”
According to him, STC is operating nine fair shops inside the Valley, which are located in Kalimati, Koteshwor, Teku, Singha Durbar, Satungal, and other places of Lalitpur and Bhaktapur.
Similarly, outside the valley, STC has opened 24 outlets in different places of Banepa, Birtamod, Biratnagar, Rajbiraj and Lahan. Likewise FMTC has set up five outlets inside Kathmandu while it is operating 18 outlets outside the Valley. DDC has four outlets inside the Valley and 11 outside the Valley, Gauchan informed. As per him, the fair price shops will be operated till November 2.
Every year government sets up fair price shops during the festive season aiming to control the arbitrary hike in price of food items and other goods in the market.
Through the fair price shops FMTC is providing special discounts on different food items. This year, it is giving discounts from five rupees to Rs 10 per kg of rice. Likewise there will be discount of Rs 10 per kg in beans, Rs 10 a kg in meat of mountain goats and goats. The company has targeted to sell around 2,000 mountain goats and 1,000 goats in this festive season. Similarly, STC is offering discount of two rupees on per kg salt and five rupees on per kg sugar. Meanwhile, DDC will give discount of Rs 50 on per kg ghee and Rs 10 on per kg paneer.
Aiming to control market during festive season, the government has also deployed market monitoring teams in association with DoCSCP, Department of Food Technology and Quality Control, Department of Livestock Development,
Nepal Bureau of Standards and Metrology and other concerned authorities.