Relief for consumers as ceiling price stays

JOHOR BARU: Housewife M. Guna remembers when she used to spend about RM100 for a week’s worth of groceries. Now, it’s RM200 to RM300 for a week.

“I feel anxious each time I go to the market because I can never tell which items will increase in price next,” said the 43-year-old, who had been bracing for more expensive marketing after the announcement that chicken and egg prices would be floated.

However, she was all smiles when she learnt that the government had done a U-turn and that the subsidies would be extended.

The ban on the export of chicken, however, has been lifted.

“This is good news for us because my grocery bill is already high as it is,” said Guna.

“I was worried that once the government removes the price control, the prices will go up and consumers will have to dig deeper into their pockets.

“My family would definitely be affected as chicken and eggs are staple items for us,” she said.

The government’s decision to continue providing subsidies and to control the prices of chicken and eggs beyond June 30 has come as a great relief to many consumers.

Housewife Eunice Liew, 39, was worried that the prices of chicken and eggs would spike from July 1.

She felt that eating out would be even more expensive as food operators would use it as a reason to raise their prices.

“Eating out and cooking at home nowadays are equally expensive.

“While I understand that chicken farmers are in a fix and floating the prices can help cover their operational cost, I am happy that there will still be a ceiling price in place because B40 families like mine are already burdened with all sorts of expenses,” she said.

Retiree Rafi Abdul Rahim, 71, felt the government should limit exports to ensure sufficient supply in the country.

“We should prioritise the country’s food supply. The government should be firm in tackling the matter and ensure a balance is struck to safeguard consumer welfare and also look out for the farmers at the same time. That is key to ensuring the country’s food security,” he added.

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