RAWALPINDI   -  The Pakistan Vanaspati Manufacturers Association (PVMA) has asked the Prime Minister Imran Khan to take action against the transporters for charging high rates for transporting their products in different parts of country. The appeal was made by PVMA Chairman Tariq Ullah Sufi through a letter. In the letter, the chairman wrote that manufacturers of Banaspati and Cooking Oil are stretched all over Pakistan with 42, 51 and 27 units in Central, South and North zone respectively. He added it was a well established fact that over 3.2 million metric tons of edible oil is imported in Pakistan, which is subsequently transported via road to all above stated units through tankers. He mentioned the freight rate is one of the dominating factors affecting the cost of end products. “Keeping this scenario in backdrop the existing rate of transportation of finished goods(Containerized) from South(Karachi) to North (Rawalpindi) is about Rs 4.70 per kg which is Rs 1.80/kg lower when compared to edible oil(Raw material in tankers) transportation which costs about Rs 6.50/kg,” the chairman said.

He added after implementation of NHA Axle Load Regime on the directions of Islamabad High Court, now the tankers carrying raw material has unilaterally enhanced the rate by almost 66 percent to the tune of Rs 10.80/kg, however the containerized finished products transportation rates presently hover around Rs 5.21/kg with an enhancement of only 11 percent. Resultantly the transportation cost of edible oil and finished products has unprecendently widened to Rs 5.58/Kg or say 105 percent. He said the profit margins of manufacturers located in Central and North Zones is only Rs 0.80/kg for lower tier brands and Rs 1.50/kg for middle tier brands. In this perspective the presently plying 10 wheeler tankers with carrying capacity of only 15 metric tons net weight of edible oil are rendered financially unfit after implementation of NHA Axle Load Regime, which has caused the Industry to stop lifting of their imported edible oil consignments and obviously on the verge of closing down, he said. PVMA Chairman said that association and transporters has a mutual understanding since last over 10 years that the freight rates shall be revised only in case price of High Speed Diesel is increased or decreased with a percentage of 0.75 only.