The price of onions shot up by Tk 8 to Tk 10 per kilogram in the retail and wholesale markets in the northern districts due to supply shortfall as the land ports were closed for Durga Puja and Ashura.
According to the land port authorities, import and export through land ports across the country remained closed for seven to 10 days for Durga Puja and Ashura. The ports reopened on October 3, they said.
As there was no import, onion price started soaring in the markets. Imported onion is being sold at Tk 40 per kg in the wholesale markets, whereas it was Tk 30 per kg two weeks ago. In the retail markets, the price is Tk 44 to Tk 45 per kg, traders said.
The price of locally produced onion has remained unchanged. It costs Tk 52 per kg in the retail markets, while it is Tk 48 per kg in the wholesale markets, they said.
Altaf Hossain, an onion trader of Bahadurbazar in the town, said he bought Indian onion from the importers at Hili land port in Hakimpur upazila of the district.
“I purchased onion at Tk 36 per kg from the importers,” he said, adding that there is no sign of price fall although trading through the land port resumed on October 3.
According to the customs department in Hili land port, around 1,500 tonnes of onion were imported through the port in the last seven days. Importers brought around 13,000 tonnes of onion from India in September and 16,000 tonnes in August through the port, said Protap Mallik, an official of Hili land port.
Harun Ur Rashid, president of Importers' Group of Hili Land Port, said onion price went up as there was no trade during the Durga Puja festival and Ashura.
Prices will come down in a couple of weeks as trading resumed around a week ago, he added.