Commerce Minister Tipu Mushi said the government will consider importing eggs if necessary to control the soaring price of the essential food item in the aftermath of the fuel price hike.
"The ministry is monitoring the market and hopes the prices [of essentials] will be under control by October," the minister told journalists on Wednesday at the Secretariat.
Prices of daily commodities have been increasing over the past few months and after the recent fuel price hike prices jumped one more time. The price of four eggs increased from Tk38 to Tk50 in the last 10 days.
The commerce minister said traders often "take advantage" of these times.
"Due to the fuel price hike, the price of rice should have increased by Tk0.50 per kg. But it has increased by Tk4. They made use of the opportunity," Tipu Munshi said.
However, he did not respond to queries on the government's decision about these "opportunist traders" or ways to reduce prices.
Poultry farm owners say production costs increased by 20-30% due to the recent fuel price hike and daily load shedding as part of the government's austerity measures.
Currently, poultry farms in the country have the capacity of producing 4 crore eggs a day.
Tipu Munshi also said, "It is not possible to control prices overnight. Besides, we do not know when Mr Putin [Russian President Vladimir Putin] will end the war."
The minister termed the trend of soaring prices as "dangerous".
He also said no decision has been made yet on fixing the price of edible oil.
"Global oil prices are falling, according to your report (media reports). On the other hand, dollar prices are increasing. The price will be fixed by coordinating these two," Tipu Munshi said.
The ministry organised the press brief to explain its stance on irregularities, a Transparency International Bangladesh (TIB) report pointed out regarding the distribution of subsidised family cards distributed by the Trading Corporation of Bangladesh (TCB).
Although the TIB report mentions irregularities take place in 39% of cases of issuing family cards, the minister claimed the number would be at most 5%.
"There is no denying this fact. But we managed to reach 95% of people," he added.
Tipu Munshi pointed out several weaknesses in the TIB report.
He said although one crore people were given food at subsidised prices, TIB's study was on only 1047 people.
Commerce Secretary Tapan Kanti Ghosh, who was present at the press conference, said the representation of TIB is not correct.
He said that TCB has given Tk200 oil at Tk110 in the market, so the subsidy is almost 100%. Whereas, TIB says it is 28%.