THE Perak branch of Domestic Trade, Cooperatives and Consumerism Ministry has set up an operation room at all its branches in the state to receive complaints on price hikes.
State director Saifullizan Kamarul Zaman said the operation rooms would be open from 8am to 10pm daily.
“We encourage people to come forward with any matters related to unfair price hikes,” he said at a press conference after conducting checks at a hotel and a glove factory in Ipoh.
“The public can also lodge a complaint through our toll-free number 1-800-886-800,” he said.
“From our side, we will continue with our operations to check on prices and services.
“We have yet to receive any complaints on price hikes since the Sales and Services Tax (SST) started on Sept 1,” he added.
There are eight branches, namely Ipoh, Taiping, Seri Manjung, Tapah, Gerik, Kuala Kangsar, Teluk Intan and Parit Buntar.
Saifullizan said the ministry conducted checks on 4,500 items at 150 premises throughout the state over the weekend.
“Since Saturday until Sunday night, we have issued notices to all 150 premises as a reminder and warning not to increase the prices of their items.
“Businesses are reminded not to take advantage of the change in the tax system by increasing their prices at their whims and fancy,” he said, adding that the operation, involving some 283 enforcement personnel, was also joined by the Ipoh City Council and Customs Department.
“Consumers too need to be smart when making a purchase,” he added.
Saifullizan said as of Aug 30, the ministry conducted a statewide Operasi Catut 5.0, involv-ing the business chain from factory to wholesale and retail.
This, he said, was to combat any incidences of price hike.
He added that some 960 premises had been issued notices under Section 21 of the Price Control and Anti-Profiteering Act and 16 notices under 53A of the same act.