No system to check if fertiliser prices are reasonable or not

Written by Press Trust of India | New Delhi | Updated: Dec 15 2012, 07:05am hrs
The government has no mechanism to check whether maximum retail price (MRP) fixed by companies for phosphastic and potassium fertilisers in the country is reasonable or not, Parliament was informed on Friday.

The government freed phosphastic (P) and potassium (K) fertilisers from its price control mechanism in April 2010.

At present, the MRP is fixed by manufacturers depending upon nutrient contents. There is at present no institutional mechanism under the Nutrient-based subsidy (NBS) policy to determine the reasonableness of MRP fixed by the fertiliser companies," minister of state for fertilisers Srikant Kumar Jena said in the Rajya Sabha.

There is also no provision for taking action against manufacturers and marketers on this behalf, he said. The Department of Fertilisers, however, keeps a watch on the MRP fixed by companies. "In case it is noticed that the prices are not reasonable, the matter is taken up with the concerned companies ," Jena said.

Retail prices of P and K fertilisers have increased in the current year mainly due fluctuation in international prices and depreciation of rupee, he said, adding that prices were higher even in the last year.

For instance, prices of DAP have increased to R26,500 a tonne this year from R10,750 per tonne in 2010-11.