Food traders allowed to increase prices, but no profiteering, says deputy minister

Deputy Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs Minister Datuk Rosol Wahid (second from right) checking on the prices of goods at the Stutong Community Market in Kuching on Friday (Jan 21). - Photo: Bernama

KUCHING: Following the rising prices of raw materials, food traders are allowed to increase their selling prices as long as there are no elements of profiteering, says Datuk Rosol Wahid.

The Deputy Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs Minister said there were complaints and grievances from traders who said the prices of food items had to be increased as the costs of raw materials have skyrocketed.

"Obviously, traders want profits. They (traders) may increase (selling) prices but their profits must not be excesssive.

"We held engagement sessions, and the ministry takes care of the trading aspect as well as consumers. We want traders to do business ethically and we do not want consumers to be deceived," he told reporters here Friday.

Rosol said this after reviewing the implementation and compliance of the Malaysian Family Maximum Price Scheme at the Stutong Community Market here, which began on Dec 7, 2021, and ends on Feb 4.

Also present at the event were the ministry's enforcement director Azman Adam and Kuching South City Council mayor Datuk Wee Hong Seng.

Meanwhile, on the problem of rising prices of chicken that is expected to be solved once the price control scheme ends, Rosol said his ministry and the Agriculture and Food Industries Ministry have issued more than 20 approved permits (APs) to balance prices in the market.

With regard to the price control scheme, Rosol said the government will reevaluate the prices of goods as well as inflation based on input from the Statistics Department, Finance Ministry, and the Agriculture and Food Industries Minister before deciding on whether or not to extend it. - Bernama

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