Competition is good, Ministry says

Competition is good for members of the public.

So says the Chief Executive Officer of the Ministry of Commerce, Industry and Labour, Pulotu Lyndon Chu Ling.

 He was responding to concerns by small businesses about being dominated by the foreign-owned businesses. 

“Well, competition is good for the customer... for all of us. If there is healthy competition we will all benefit,” he said. 

“But one of the responsibilities of the Ministry is to ensure there is fair competition, and when we receive complaints from the public especially the customers that’s when the government and the Ministry will intervene." 

“This will ensure that all the competitors in that specific sector will be disciplined accordingly under the law.” 

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The growth of Asian-owned businesses such as restaurants, clothing shops, Laundromats and retail stores is alarming.

At Vaitele Market the progress of what appears to be a large store being built inside the market where farmers used to sell their produces is making vendors there very nervous.

The store belongs to the owner of Coin Save; one of the fastest-growing Chinese owned and operated businesses in the country. 

The owner Tu’itu’itoaiga Teeking Weng has been given permission by the government to develop the $5.7million complex. 

Several small business owners in the area worried they are not getting fair competition.

In response to questions, Pulotu told the Samoa Observer the government has yet to receive any official complaint from small businesses in this area. 

“But as I was saying as long as the competition is right and fair and that will be alright. 

 “We also take on complaints as to the quality of goods. If there are goods that the public thinks are not up to standard and its being reported to us, we will do our best to accommodate the complaints.”

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