The Consumers Association of Bangladesh (CAB) has protested against the decision of the Bangladesh Sugar Refiners Association to raise the price of sugar by Tk25 per kg and urged the government not to implement this decision.
In a press release, the organisation stated, "On 19 June, the mill owners notified the Bangladesh Trade and Tariff Commission about their intention to raise sugar prices, which is to be effective from 22 June."
The CAB strongly criticises the decision of the mill owners as being against the interests of consumers.
"The mill owners association has taken this decision solely to maximise their profits by compelling consumers to purchase sugar at inflated prices ahead of the upcoming Eid-ul-Adha," the organisation said.
Currently, sugar is selling in the market at a higher price than the price set by the government. The government has fixed Tk120 per kg for loose sugar and Tk125 per kg for packaged sugar in the retail market. But in the retail market, loose sugar is selling at Tk130 to Tk140 per kg, as per the CAB.
"Due to the manipulation of mill owners and dealers, packaged sugar is now not available in the open market. In this situation, this unreasonable decision of the sugar mill owners' organisation cannot be accepted in any way," said the CAB press release.
The press release expressed concern that the government's role in setting the price of sugar seems to have been bypassed by the sugar mill owners' association.
The association independently determines the increased price of sugar and informs the Bangladesh Trade and Tariff Commission about its implementation date, it reads.
The organisation urged the Bangladesh Trade and Tariff Commission to ensure that both open sugar and packaged sugar are available in the retail market at the government's predetermined price.