BUTTERWORTH: Traders have been warned not to take advantage of the Hari Raya festive season to raise prices of items.
Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs Ministry’s Penang enforcement chief Chin Ching Chung said traders must adhere to the Festive Season Maximum Price Control Scheme (SHMMP) or action would be taken against them.
“We want to warn traders and companies not to take this lightly and to be ethical. If they violate this and overcharge people, there will be serious consequences under the Price Control and Anti-Profiteering Act 2011.
“Individuals found guilty of selling items above the maximum price could be fined up to RM100,000 or jailed not more than three years or both, or pay compounds up to RM50,000, while companies could be fined up to RM500,000 or compounded up to RM250,000 for committing a similar offence.
“The price tag must be in pink and displayed clearly. For failure to display the pink price tag on controlled goods, individuals can be fined up to RM10,000 or compounded up to RM5,000, ” he said during a visit to a popular hypermarket in Seberang Jaya yesterday.
Chin said there had been two reports so far – one for not displaying the price tag and another for overpricing chicken.
“We followed up on the price tag complaint and discovered the price was on display, ” he said.
“We will be checking on the overpriced chicken complaint soon.”
Chin said there were two lists under the SHMMP.
“The first list comprises 10 items that fall under the scheme from May 20 to June 3.
“The second list comprises 18 items which came under price control yesterday until June 3. This means it will be under the scheme for 15 days as opposed to the usual one month.
“This is probably due to the movement control order, ” he said.
Chin said there were 130 enforcement officers in the state who would be on the ground throughout the 15 days, including during Hari Raya to ensure prices were not increased.
He then urged Penangites not to panic buy as there was more than enough supply of rations for everyone.
“There is no need to buy extra. Buy what you need and plan your shopping.
“When you panic buy there will be pressure to raise prices, ” he said.
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