Govt may allow onion import soon: Agri Secretary 

Publish: 7:49 PM, May 14, 2023 | Update: 7:49 PM, May 14, 2023

Agriculture Secretary Wahida Akhter today said the government may give the permission of onion import soon if the price of this kitchen item goes upward as the country’s current onion stock is over 18 lakh tons.

“The government will soon consider allowing onion import which is remaining suspended in the interest of the growers, if the price of onion goes upward,” she said while discussing on the price hike of onion at the conference room of the ministry in the secretariat here.

The country has produced 34 lakh tons of onion this year and now the country has a stock of some 18.30 lakh tons, said the secretary, adding: “So, there is no reason to increase the price of onion at this time, but the price is rising a little bit.”

The Agriculture Ministry is monitoring the onion market continuously, officials told the meeting.

Presenting the overall situation including production, demand and import of the onion, the Department of Agricultural Extension (DAE) said the country’s onion production was over 34 lakh tons this year against the demand of 26-28 lakh tons.

On the other hand, the country has a stock of 18.30 lakh tons onion while 30 to 35 percent onion usually gets rotten due to unfavorable condition during preservation, the DAE added.

In 2001-22, the country had imported huge onion and the price of the local onion was lowered at Taka 30-35 per kg while production cost of per kg local onion was Taka 28-30. The government temporarily suspended the onion import this year for raising the local production.

Additional secretary Rabindra Sri Barua, DAE’s Director General Badal Chandra Biswas, Director General of the Department of Agricultural Marketing (DAM) M Masud Karim, Deputy Secretary (Extension Department) Munsur Alam, among others, attended the meeting.