BY HUSNINA RAMLAN
KUCHING: Traders are allowed to increase the price of goods as long as there is no rationing element.
Deputy Minister of Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs Datuk Rosol Wahid said this, adding it was due to the increase in the price of raw materials that caused traders to also increase their prices.
“There are complaints from traders who said they had to raise prices due to rising raw material prices.
“Therefore, they can raise the price, but not to get a high profit rate,” he said during a programme at the Stutong Community Market here on Friday.
Meanwhile, Rosol noted the goods in the market complied with the Malaysian Maximum Family Price Scheme (SHMKM).
“These include items such as eggs, chicken, tomatoes and others.”
Besides that, Rosol also said the price of goods was expected to increase after SHMKM ends on Feb 4.
He said that his party had predicted the matter, but it was not necessarily accurate because the prediction was made to give precautionary measures to consumers to be better prepared.
Rosol further revealed that his ministry had a close relationship with the Ministry of Agriculture and Food Industry (MAFI) to bring imported supplies into the country to overcome the issue.
“So far, I understand that MAFI has issued more than 20 import permits to balance prices in the market and it is hoped to solve the price problem in the near future.”
Rosol added that a study would be done again after SHMKM ends.
He stated that the goal of the ministry was to ensure a balance between traders and consumers.
There were several factors, he explained, for the price increase, namely the increase in prices of raw materials, shipping costs and foreign exchange.
“However, we have advocated and negotiated with traders not to raise prices too much to reduce the pressure of the current situation.”