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ÖZER MATLI: WE HAVE A REPORT ON WAYS TO CURB RISING FOOD PRICES

The Union of Chambers and Commodity Exchanges of Turkey (TOBB) is set to present a report on ways to curb rising food prices to the authorities, an executive of the union has said.

“We will convey our proposals including an array of measures to the Central Bank and the relevant ministries and we will continue our efforts to find solutions intensely with new meetings in the upcoming days,” said Özer Matlı, a TOBB executive, following an online Agriculture Council meeting of the union on Feb. 6.

Matlı, who is also the head of the commodity exchange market in the northwestern province of Bursa, said that developing smart agricultural production and increasing efficiency are on top of their proposals.

Widening the scope of the agricultural insurance system and decreasing rates of special consumption taxes on diesel fuel and fertilizers will be among TOBB’s proposals, according to Matlı’s remarks.

He also said that lowering value-added tax rates on food products and providing incentives for electricity used in agricultural production will be in the report.

“Of course, unfair price hikes should be restrained, but without ruling out the main reasons,” said Matlı, referring to stricter price controls imposed at local markets in recent weeks.

Food prices have been on the rise due to pandemic-related disruptions in supply chains, increasing input prices, overstocking, seasonal effects, demand-supply gaps caused by droughts and fluctuations in commodity markets prompted by monetary expansion policies of the central banks, he added.

“What we should do is to prepare a production plan and eventually a long-term agricultural policy to solve the present problems instead of looking for solutions to save the day,” Matlı said.

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