Domestic Trade Ministry issues 48 notices to Johor businesses for hiking prices

JOHOR BARU: The Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs Ministry has issued some 48 notices to retailers, wholesalers and manufacturers in Johor for increasing the price of goods sold at their premises.

State Unity, Trade and Consumer Affairs Committee chairman Dr Chong Fat Full (pic) said that the notices were issued following checks on some 936 premises conducted by the Ministry in Johor between Jan 1 to Saturday (Jan 23).

“The checks were conducted on some 817 retailers, 97 wholesalers and 22 manufacturers throughout the state. Following the inspections, some 48 notices were issued to the businesses under Section 21 of the Price Control and Anti-Profiteering Act (AKHAP) 2011, ” he said.

Dr Chong added that a further investigation would be conducted to get more information on the increase in prices and to find out if there are any profiteering elements

He said in a statement on Sunday (Jan 24) that business owners suspected of conducting profiteering activities would be investigated and if found guilty could have actions taken against them under Section 14 of the AKHAP 2011.

“Individuals found guilty of offences under the Act could be charged in court with fines up to RM100,000, a maximum three-year jail term or both for the first offence. For repeated offences, the fines could go up to RM250,000, a maximum five-year jail term or both.” said Chong.

Dr Chong added that companies found guilty could be charged up to RM500,000 for the first offence or up to RM1mil for repeated offences

He said that the Ministry has taken note of public complaints in Johor regarding the increase in prices on several daily needs items in the market since the second movement control order (MCO).

“The Ministry has taken proactive measures and has been conducting regular inspections on the status of the basic daily needs at all levels of production, ” he said

“Apart from checking on the status of controlled goods such as sugar, flour and cooking oil, the Ministry is also checking on other basic needs such as bread, rice, powder milk, chicken, eggs, vegetables, face masks and hand sanitisers, ” added Dr Chong.

He urged businesses to adhere to the law and not to simply increase the price of goods at times like this.

“The public can also inform the Ministry if they find any businesses that have failed to adhere to the regulations, ” he said.

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