By SALINA KHALIDsalina@thestar.com.my
CONSUMERS should know their rights and make good choices when spending, said Selangor Tourism, Health and Consumer Affairs chairman Datuk Dr Lim Thuang Seng.
“Whether they realise it or not, consumers directly impact inflation and gross domestic product (GDP).
“Therefore, it is the government's intention to create smart consumers who know their rights and responsibilities and who are able to take action rationally,” he said at the launch of the Smart Consumer Roadshow at SACC Mall, Shah Alam recently.
The roadshow is part of efforts to boost public awareness on the importance of smart consumerism and consumer rights.
Also present at the event organised by the Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs Ministry were Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs Ministry deputy secretary general for consumerism and management Mohd Nor Abd Aziz and the Ministry's Selangor director Abdul Rosik Yakub.
Dr Lim added consumers have given the responsibility to help create and develop an ethical and fair priced market place.
He said consumers should realise they always had a choice when shopping and are entitled to quality goods and services.
“They should also examine the value of things before committing to certain prices and compare prices at several places,” he said.
The campaign, launched on July 26, 2005, in Kuala Lumpur, also featured three personality icons known as Smart Gen. The three icons, Zed, Jojo and Maya, represent target groups with different consumer values and spending habits.
“Youngsters are consumers too, and it is important to know what they like, where they are heading and how they are spending money.
“Getting to them young means they can be nurtured on the right consumer values,” said Mohd Nor.
He explained that smart consumers would understand the market environment better, be able to make good choices and also be more responsible in the future.
During the roadshow, which ended yesterday, visitors were entertained with fashion shows and live performances by local artistes like Helmi and The Gimmick, Dina of Malaysian Idol 2, Ahli Fikir and Hazami.
The roadshow will be at Seremban Parade from Feb 9 to 13, City Square Johor Baru (Feb 16-20), Bukit Jambul Shopping Centre (March 9-13), Centre Point Shopping Complex in Kota Kinabalu (March 30- Apr 3) and at the 13th Regatta Lepa in Semporna, Sabah (Apr 14-16).