Utility stores in Pakistan have reported a substantial increase in sales, largely attributed to government subsidies on essential items. In the fiscal year 2022-23, the stores recorded sales of Rs. 137.15 billion for non-subsidized items and Rs. 151 billion for subsidized items, resulting in a net profit of Rs. 764 million.
The surge in sales is credited to subsidies on crucial commodities like flour, sugar, ghee, pulses, and rice. Over the past three years, the Utility Stores Corporation has consistently posted profits, with sales reaching Rs. 112.32 billion in 2022-2021, Rs. 120.24 billion in 2021-2020, and Rs. 53.32 billion in 2020-2019.
It’s essential to note that while the utility stores have seen remarkable sales growth, an outlet in Shikarpur City, Sindh, faced accusations last year of selling expired and substandard ghee. A citizen filed a petition, citing a report by the Pakistan Accounts Committee confirming the purchase of substandard ghee by the outlet.
This news showcases the significant impact of government subsidies on sales at utility stores, emphasizing their role in providing essential items to the public at affordable prices.