Import of frozen whole chicken will lower prices, says domestic trade ministry

ALOR GAJAH: The government’s move to allow the import of frozen whole chicken is expected to help reduce prices in the market, says Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs Ministry secretary-general Datuk Seri Hasnol Zam Zam Ahmad.

He said the move was expected to result in excess supply in the local market, but at the same time other factors were involved including the prices of frozen chicken fixed by the producing countries.

“Normally, the prices will drop slightly when there is more supply but we first have to see the effect of the imports on the domestic market.

“And if the prices (of frozen whole chicken) from the source countries are far lower than the prices offered in the country, maybe the prices which the traders can offer will also be low.

“But we have yet to obtain this information as the matter is handled by the Agriculture and Food Industries Ministry,” he said after a visit to the Malaysian Family Sales Programme here on Sunday (Dec 5).

Hasnol Zam Zam was commenting on the Agriculture Ministry's announcement that the government had allowed the import of frozen whole chicken for a three-month period from this month until February.

He said his ministry would review the maximum price of standard chicken at retail (RM9.30 per kg) and wholesale (RM8 per kg) in the future if chicken prices in the domestic market returned to normal.

“We will review that just like other items. For example, facemasks, for which despite the government setting a RM0.70 ceiling price, prices dropped lower than that, following many offers including from abroad,” he said.

In another development, he said the Malaysian Family Sales Programme would be expanded more widely and its organisation extended after February if there is a high need or demand from the people. – Bernama

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