The question of when will the ever-increasing cooking oil prices come down is a constant concern among poor and middle-class families. What is the reason for the rise in oil prices in India? What structure does the oil business have? Is there a chance to lower the price? - Let's answer these questions.

One of the essential food ingredients is cooking oil. In the market, the rate of increase does not decrease. There are many reasons for this. Chief among them is our massive import of cooking oil. We are meeting about 60 percent of our cooking oil requirement through imports. india is the largest importer of cooking oil in the world. india is the second largest consumer of cooking oil.

Oil year is observed by oil companies like financial year and academic year. The oil year starts in november and ends in december every year. Imported oil is of two types. One can be used for cooking; Others can be used by companies that manufacture laundry detergent, bath soap, paint, etc. In the first half of the current oil year alone, we have imported 80 lakh 2 thousand 36 metric tons of cooking oil. During the same period we have imported 1 lakh 8 thousand 345 metric tons of oil for industrial use.

The amount of oil we import is increasing. The amount of cooking oil we imported during the same period in the previous oil year was 65 lakh 43 thousand 3 metric tons; The amount of oil for industries is one lakh 64 thousand 571 metric tons. Relatively speaking, imports of both types of oil increased by 21 percent in the first half of the current oil year over the previous period.

As far as cooking oil is concerned, we import two types of oil, refined oil and unrefined oil. In the first half of the current oil year, we have imported 11 lakh 347 metric tons of refined oil and 69 lakh 689 metric tons of crude oil.

We mainly import refined, deodorized palm oil, unrefined palm oil, unrefined soybean oil and unrefined sunflower oil. We import cooking oil from countries like Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, Argentina, Brazil, ukraine and Russia.

Apart from these, oils such as groundnut oil, coconut oil, linseed oil, cotton seed oil, castor oil are produced locally. Through these, 40 percent of the cooking oil requirement is met.

There is a huge difference between the wholesale price of edible oils in the domestic market and their retail price. According to the wholesale price list, groundnut oil price is Rs.162 per kg, rapeseed oil price is Rs.272 per kg and linseed oil price is Rs.89 per kg. Cottonseed oil is sold at Rs.86 per kg and castor oil at Rs.116 per kg. But, their retail price is very high.

Those in the know say that the cost of packaging the oil, transportation cost, commission to agents, distributors, and profit to the shopkeeper at the end add up to the retail price of the oil. At the same time, they also say that the government should intensify its monitoring in this matter.

As 60 percent of oil is dependent on foreign countries, experts say that their domestic prices fluctuate according to international market conditions and urge the government to take steps to reduce oil imports. They demand that the government should take necessary measures to boost domestic production under the Self-Reliance india scheme and also pay attention to the price at which they are sold at retail outlets.

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