The National Assembly’s Standing Committee on Commerce Friday directed the Trading Corporation of Pakistan (TCP) to devise a comprehensive mechanism for ensuring that maximum benefit of the subsidies on import of wheat and fertilizers reach the public, particularly the farmers. The NA body met here with Raza Rabani Khar in the chair. Committee members Shaista Pervaiz Malik, Wajiha Qamar, Shahza Fatima, Usman Ibrahim and Rasheed Ahmed Khan as well as officials of the Ministry of Commerce and the TCP attended the meeting. The committee directed the TCP management to submit a comprehensive plan to ensure timely response by the Corporation in emerging situations and provision of maximum benefit of import of wheat, sugar and Urea fertilizer to the consumers. Raza Rabani Khar assured that the committee would coordinate with all the relevant ministries and government organisations for resolving the issues at the earliest. The committee members said there were several complaints about the quality of imported wheat and sugar in the past, and recommended that quality standards and a fool proof mechanism must be in place to maintain the quality of imported commodities at all stages from procurement to supply to the end users. TCP Chairman Rafeo Bashir Shah briefed the committee in detail about the mandate and scope, performance, and market operations of the Corporation as well as the issues being faced by it and the way forward. He said the TCP imported wheat, sugar and Urea fertilizers on the directives of Federal Government for market stabilization in emergent conditions. “The TCP is a public sector company fully owned by the Federal Government through the Ministry of Commerce. Its paid up capital was Rs 1 billion as on June 30, 2021 and after tax profit Rs 1.517 billion for FY 2020-21,” he added. Besides the commodities import, the TCP also conducted rice inspection and certification for G.I. (geographical indication) and authenticity for brown rice, local cotton procurement for market stabilization and real estate management, he added. The TCP chairman said the Corporation had imported 0.986 million metric tonnes (MMT) wheat from Romania, Bulgaria, France and Russia during the current year. However, after recent heavy rains and floods the government had directed it to import additional 1.6 MMT of wheat to meet domestic needs. He said the TCP, on the recommendations of the Ministry of Industries and Production, had imported 0.1 MMT Urea in January and February this year from China, while contracts were also finalised for import of 0.2 MMT more Urea in September and October. The ministry had recently asked it to import additional 0.3 MMT Urea. The matter of import of 0.1 MMT DAP fertilizer was in process as well, he said, adding the TCP could play a major role, through its timely intervention, in market stabilization of commodities, especially those which were not subsidised like the DAP. He sought the NA body’s assistance for payment of outstanding debt of the Utility Stores Corporation and the National Fertilizer Marketing Limited, besides streamlining of the TCP’s operations and swift response to government requirements particularly in grant of permission for pre-qualification of international commodity supply companies and exemption or relaxation of certain PPRA rules.