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City of Banjul
Tuesday, April 16, 2024
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Gov’t says deliberate price hikes unacceptable

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Banjul, The Gambia –The Gambia Government through the Ministries of Trade and Industry (MOTIE) and Finance and Economic Affairs (MOFEA) held a joint stakeholder meeting yesterday with major importers of essential commodities and seriously discussed issues over the rising prices of essential goods.

 During the ministerial meeting, The Gambia Government acknowledged the external circumstances emanating from the COVID-19 pandemic and the current situation in Ukraine as significant economic factors affecting global supply chain. While that is true, The Government expressed concern over the recent increment of prices of basic commodities in the in the domestic market. Government notes that this pattern is disproportionately getting frequent and warns that such brutal daily retail price increases are totally unacceptable.

Specifically, there is worrisome evidence of multiple price increases of a commodity within the day (price of the same commodity costing, let’s say D100 in the morning and this becomes D125 in the evening at the same place). This is an example of price gouging and is not in line with the principle of free market economics.

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Consumers should not be taken advantage of, in these challenging times particularly, as we approach the Holy month of Ramadan. Government has not increased any duty or taxes relating to these essential commodities and expects the retailers to be reasonable in their pricing and failure to comply may require Government to deploy tools to address the anomaly.

Government through GRA, GCCPC and other state security apparatus will embark on a strong monitoring of retail prices to ensure that consumers are not exploited. The Gambia Government is therefore, calling on all the retailers of essential commodities to be fair in their pricing. Failure to comply will result in the prosecution of violators under the Competition Act, 2007.

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