ISLAMABAD: Adviser to the Prime Minister on Finance and Revenue Dr Abdul Hafeez Shaikh Monday directed the provincial governments to take action against hoarders of essential food items to maintain stability in prices across the country. Chairing the meeting of National Price Monitoring Committee (NPMC) through video link here, the adviser however, appreciated the efforts of the provincial governments in controlling the prices of wheat through better supplies. Among others, the meeting was attended by Minister for Industries and Production Hammad Azhar, representatives from Bureau of Statistics, Ministry of Commerce, Ministry of National Food Security and Research, Utility Stores Corporation, Trade Corporation of Pakistan, Pakistan Customs, Cabinet Division, provincial governments, and ICT Administration, according to press statement issued by the Finance Ministry. Shaikh also directed the Logistics Committee, constituted by the Economic Coordination Committee (ECC), to apprise him of the supply of wheat/sugar inside the country on regular basis and wherever needed, he would provide his complete cooperation in resolving any difficulties that may arise during the course of the business. Expressing satisfaction over declining trend of prices in wheat and sugar in the markets, he said that due to the tireless efforts of the government for controlling the increasing prices of wheat and sugar, the prices of both items have considerably decreased. On the occasion, Secretary Finance while presenting the price trend of essential items across the country said that the weekly Sensitive Price Index (SPI) has declined by 0.23% on December 3, 2020 as compared to the last week. He also briefed that the prices of 13 essential items have registered a decline whereas the price of 21 items has remained stable. Secretary Finance updated that there has been an increased supply of wheat across the country to the mills; reaching around 44000 MT per day and those mills which were involved in any malpractices are dealt strictly, added Secretary Finance. The rising trend in the prices of chicken and meat is due to change in demand and supply factors as demand has been reduced due to ongoing pandemic but the government has also engaging the chicken/ meat producers to bring down prices to a reasonable level and provincial governments are onboard for a consolidated response, he added. Minister for Industries and Production updated NPMC that the supply of sugar across the country has increased and the price of the commodity is showing a consistent decrease. He added that Ministry Industries and Production will take up the requirement of wheat and sugar for Utility Stores Corporation with PASSCO and TCP to ensure uninterrupted supply at a reasonable price.