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ISLAMABAD, Pakistan – Pakistan on Friday rejected Russia’s offer to supply 120,000 metric tons of wheat at a price of $399.50, according to sources, negotiating further reduction of 2.4% in the rate as the country’s economy continue to falter.

Economic Coordination Committee (ECC) of the Cabinet made the decision after consulting with Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif, which was presided over by Finance Minister Miftah Ismail.

Russia had made the final offer to supply the wheat at $399.50 per metric ton under the government-to-government deal. But ECC negotiates for the price of $390, saying there is a declining trend in the price of wheat that may further reduce in coming days.

“The ECC decided that the Russian side may be offered the price of $390 and the offer may be cancelled if they (Russians) do not accept the offer,” a statement issued by the finance ministry said, as Tribune quoted.

However, some ECC members were against the decision to reject the Russian offer, arguing Pakistan’s stand at relatively thin position of the wheat stocks.

The government’s proposed price of $390 per ton would save about $1.4 million at the total offered quantity of 120,000 metric tons – a 2.4% less than the final Russian offer.

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Pakistan had decided to import three million metric tons of wheat this year to meet its consumption and strategic reserves requirements.

The government has already procured 986,000 metric tons of wheat through three different international competitive bidding deals.

The Trading Corporation of Pakistan (TCP) had initiated the process of importing wheat from Russia on a government-to-government basis, were both governments signed a memorandum of understanding in June this year.

Initially, Russia had offered the wheat price at $410 per metric ton, which it subsequently lowered by 2.6 percent at the current price of $399.50.

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