Lotopa retailer hit by U.S. slowdown

A local retailer that sells American products says the economic slowdown in the U.S. is affecting their ability to import goods.

The R & J Mackenzie General Manager, Pita Malae, says the effects of the coronavirus (COVID-19) global pandemic in America is making it harder for them to import goods into Samoa.

“They’ve made it a little harder on us to import stuff because I am guessing they are trying to save the products for the States now,” he said.

“We’re trying to find other suppliers that are okay with still sending stuff overseas…our suppliers have shut down. They are still on shutdown mode but we need our products so we are trying to find suppliers that are still open.”

Pet food, chips, cookies and American candies are some of the best-selling items at the R & J Mackenzie shop at Lotopa.

According to Mr Malae, the business is currently doing okay, but that will depend on how long the COVID-19 shutdown in the various U.S. states stays in place for.

“We’re doing okay but it depends on how long the lockdown is going to be. That is what will really determine if we are going to be okay or not,” he added, while indicating that they are working with the Government.

“We are okay with working with the Government. We follow the procedures they set but we are trying to find out what we can do to get our supply in. Pretty much anything American that you can think of we do our best to bring it in – anything from Oreos to Doritos to American candies, Snickers, Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups, pretty much all those.” 

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