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Centre directs state govts to release nearly 2.7 MT of wheat

Under the open market sale scheme (OMSS) the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) last week had approved the sale of 6.5 MT of wheat through the tender process. Following this, the Food Corporation of India (FCI) has instructed the state governments to release nearly 2.7 million tonnes (MT) of wheat to bulk consumers such as flour mills and biscuit makers. The above step will help to control the market prices and also to off-load the high stocks level of the central pool. The scheme would be valid up to February 2013.

The government is taking all possible steps to control wheat prices by offering stocks under OMSS and for smaller states like Himachal Pradesh a minimum of 25,000 tonnes of wheat will be released while for big states a maximum of 1 lakh tonnes of wheat will be released every week.

On weekly basis, FCI will issue tenders and the base price will be the minimum support price (MSP) and local tax and transportation charges. Even though the government's MSP stands at Rs 12.85 per kg in the national capital region, the prices of packed wheat flour are currently ruling at Rs 21 per kg.

During the 2011-12 marketing year (July-June) period, the country had produced a record 93.9 MT of wheat. Due to record procurement at the end of last month the wheat stocks in the central pool now stands at 40.58 MT.

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