By LIM CHIA YINGchiaying@thestar.com.myPhoto by CHUA KOK HWA
BE very meticulous in your choice when you make a purchase, and this will in turn educate the traders of their responsibility in their pricing, were the words of advice given by Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs Minister Datuk Mohd Shafie Apdal.
“As consumers, we should be aware of our surroundings as there is bound to be some unreasonable and irresponsible increases in prices. When the government increases petrol prices, some traders follow suit by increasing their product prices, too,” Shafie said.
“Yet there is no rationale behind this as these products sometimes do not have any direct relation to petrol that would explain the need for an increase.” Shafie was speaking at the Price Cut Campaign launch by Mydin Mohamed Holdings Berhad at the Mydin Wholesale Hypermarket in USJ 1, Subang Jaya, recently.
The campaign will be implemented at all Mydin outlets in support of the government’s call to retail products at fair prices.
Shafie commended the campaign, saying that such support was needed to ensure consumers were not burdened by high prices.
“This campaign is different because it does not involve price cuts just on the hypermarket’s items, but also those of tenants and its suppliers,” he said.
“You have set the standard and I hope others will follow soon. This would help ensure that the responsibility of businesses is inculcated,” Shafie said to the Mydin management.
Mydin managing director Datuk Haji Ameer Ali Mydin said Mydin’s products were usually 20% to 40% lower all year round compared to its competitors’, which he claimed were priced at the recommended selling price (RSP) determined by suppliers, except during festive seasons and short-term sales.
“By shopping at Mydin, customers can enjoy total savings of at least RM160mil, which is a figure for annual savings based on our turnover,” he said,
In conjunction with the campaign, the chain also launched a shopping directory to guide consumers on making the right choices and save while they shopped.
The directory, he said, would enable customers to make product comparisons between Mydin and other hypermarkets and supermarkets.
“In the directory, we have provided prices for 222 of our key basic products. Until July 11, our prices will remain fixed so shoppers can use the directory until then to find out which retailer offers them the best prices. Even our Rasa Village food court is giving a 20% discount on food and beverages until that date,” Ameer said.
Shoppers who participate in the campaign will also stand a chance of winning some exciting prizes in store, which include products placed in Malaysia’s biggest trolley worth RM8,888 and Mydin shopping vouchers worth RM1,000, RM500, RM350 and RM50.
Shafie welcomed the introduction of the directory as a way for customers to empower themselves.
“Competition in the market is healthy as it enables customers to have choices. As a start, we are gradually placing stickers with our hotline and SMS number at al premises nationwide, for the benefit of members of the public who wish to make any complaints. We are kicking off with food outlets,” he said.
Shafie said that the ministry controlled the prices of some 20 types of food at all times, and about 12 more during festive seasons.
Ministry director-general Mohd Roslan Mahayudin said as of June 11, 75,844 premises nationwide had been checked, with items amounting to RM95,983.50 confiscated and compounds totalling RM138,730 issued.
Shafie later launched Mydin’s new website www.mydin.com.my where shoppers can get updates on the hypermarket’s promotions, prices, and activities.
The ministry’s toll-free hotline number is 1-800-886-800; consumers can also SMS to 32255.