Pakistan receives second urea shipment from Azerbaijan’s SOCAR plant

Pakistan’s agricultural sector has recently been fortified with the arrival of a second urea shipment from Azerbaijan, marking a significant step towards addressing the nation’s urgent fertilizer shortage and soaring prices. The 45,000 metric tonnes of urea, transported via the vessel Lem Verbena from Qatar, are part of a broader agreement with Azerbaijan’s SOCAR Carbamide plant. This Government-to-Government (G2G) contract stipulates the supply of over 200,000 metric tonnes of urea, aiming to stabilize the agricultural supply chain throughout the crucial Rabi cropping season. The schedule includes two additional shipments expected from Russia and Azerbaijan within the next fortnight, fulfilling the terms of the agreement.

The deal, which is significant in volume and strategic importance, is set at $388.50 per metric ton. Azerbaijan’s state-owned SOCAR is supplying the urea to Pakistan on a deferred payment mechanism that uniquely requires no interest or guarantees, as per market sources. This agreement is seen as a testament to the strengthening bilateral relations and trust between Pakistan and Azerbaijan.

Amid these developments, Caretaker Prime Minister Anwaar ul Haq Kakar has taken a stern stance against the hoarding of fertilizer and illegal profiteering within the country. During a recent meeting focused on the availability of urea fertilizer, he ordered legal actions against those involved in such activities. In a similar vein, the Apex Committee of the Special Investment Facilitation Council (SIFC) of the government of Pakistan resolved to combat smuggling, hoarding, and market manipulation which significantly affect the nation’s economy and burden its citizens.

In tandem, the provincial governments of Sindh and Punjab have also initiated measures against entities hoarding and selling urea at inflated prices. These concerted efforts underscore a robust and multi-tiered approach to not only ensure the availability of critical agricultural inputs like urea but also to safeguard the agricultural sector from exploitative practices that can hamper its productivity and growth.

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