KUALA LUMPUR, March 8 — There have been no reports of producers or traders hoarding goods to cause a hike in the price of essential goods in the market, the Dewan Rakyat was told today.
Deputy Minister of Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs (KPDNHEP) Datuk Rosol Wahid said, on the other hand, the increase in the price of goods was due to the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic, floods and rising costs of raw material.
“We have more than 2,000 enforcement officers, including those monitoring prices, nationwide who track the availability of goods, tracing supply from producers to consumers, on how much is distributed or held in stock,” he said during the question-and-answer session here today.
He was replying to a supplementary question from Kuala Krai MP Abdul Latif Abdul Rahman who wanted to know the steps taken by the ministry to avoid traders hoarding goods due to government price intervention.
In answer to a supplementary question from Pokok Sena MP Datuk Mahfuz Omar who asked about the import of chicken to stabilise prices and ensure supply is sufficient, Rosol said so far 29 permits have been issued to importers.
“So far we only bring in chicken from Thailand, none from China or Brazil, I understand as many as two or three containers have been brought in for a start,” he said.
Meanwhile, answering the original question from Datuk Seri Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail (PH-Pandan) on steps taken by the National Action Council on Cost of Living (Naccol) to ensure reasonable price control on essential goods, Rosol said two Naccol meetings were held on December 9, 2021, and January 31 this year.
As a result of the meetings, several short-term measures were taken, including the Keluarga Malaysia Sales Programme (PJKM), Cooking Oil Price Control Mechanism and the Keluarga Malaysia Maximum Price Scheme (SHMKM) which has been extended until June 5.
Another measure was to lower the retail price of standard chicken under SHMKM to RM8.90; the price of eggs for grades A, B and C lowered during the implementation of SHMKM since February, and retained until June as well as subsidies given to poultry farmers.