Bring receipts with your complaints: MCIL

By Matai'a Lanuola Tusani T - Ah Tong 10 July 2024, 9:00PM

Customers have been urged to provide receipts to support claims of unfair price increases as the Price Control Order gets extended for another six months. 

The Ministry of Commerce Industry and Labour confirmed the decision from Cabinet to approve the decision by the Samoa Competition and Consumer Commission (Commission) to extend the validity of Price Control Order (P.C.O.) no.1. 2023 until December 2024. 

The M.C.I.L. Acting Chief Executive Officer, Fepuleai Roger Toleafoa and secretary to the Commission signed off the notice to advise the public about the extended period for P.C.O.

“The decision by the Commission signifies a continuation of the regulatory measures put in place through PCO NO1. 2023 to control prices within the market and protect consumers from unfair pricing practices by traders,” he said. 

“With the extension of PCO no1.2023 all traders are reminded that under Section 95 of the Competition and Consumer Act 2016, it is mandatory to display the PCO prominently within their business premises to ensure that consumers can easily reference prices and helps maintain transparency in pricing.” 

Consumers have also been encouraged to report any instances of unfair price hikes by providing receipts to facilitate prompt and effective action on their complaints when lodged. 

In June, many representatives in the House spoke about the high cost of living and costs of essential goods during the national budget debate. 

The Minister of Finance, Lautimuia Uelese Vaai spoke about the annual inflation rate and said it remained elevated but gradually decreased to 5.9 per cent in March 2024 from a high of 12.0 per cent in June 2023.

He also responded to members' concerns about the annual inflation going down yet the cost of a box of chicken remaining high. 

The Minister noted the Consumer Price Index contained the price list of 163 commodities; 50 per cent of them were local goods and 50 percent imported. 

He explained the formula of calculating inflation was the average price of all the commodities in the CPI list and the formula was used worldwide. 

“The price for goods in the 163 commodities show that some goods are high and others are low,” he said. 

“The low price goods offset the price for the higher ones…it is correct that some of the prices for these goods are high.” 

Lautimuia reiterated that the formula to calculate inflation uses the average price of commodities and in doing so the cost of some goods will go up while others will drop. 

By Matai'a Lanuola Tusani T - Ah Tong 10 July 2024, 9:00PM
Samoa Observer

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