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Saturday, April 17, 2021

Street price for cement pegged at D305

By Mafugi Ceesay

The Ministry of Trade has announced that henceforth cement will be sold in The Gambia at D285, factory price, and D305 retail price.

The new measure is contained in a press statement issued by the Ministry over the weekend, following a public outcry about the unavailability and high price of cement. The ministry also said cement has now been classified as an essential commodity and warned against hoarding it.

The full statement reads:

“The General Public is hereby informed that the Ministry of Trade, Industry, Regional Integration and Employment, as part of its monitoring of prices of commodities has observed with great concern the continuous hikes in the prices of some of these commodities, especially cement.

Following these observations, the Ministry has conducted a series of consultations with the relevant stakeholders, and it was confirmed that there is a disproportional increase between the wholesale and retail prices of cement. The factory price ranges from D265 to D285 whilst the retail price has ranged from D340 to D400 over the past few weeks.

The Ministry of Trade, Industry, Regional Integration and Employment (MOTIE) wishes to inform that the Essential Commodities Act enacted by the National Assembly in 2015 serves to ensure that, in the interest of the General Public, the importation, distribution and retailing of essential commodities in The Gambia is regulated to ensure its availability at fair and reasonable prices. By this declaration, cement is now classified as an essential commodity in line with the Essential Commodities Act 2015. As such, all importers, distributors and retailers of cement are required to obtain a license from MOTIE with immediate effect in line with the Act.

In addition to cement, all importers, distributors and major retailers of the following essential commodities are reminded to obtain a license from MOTIE by I s t of May 2021: rice, sugar, edible oil, onions, potatoes, flour, chicken legs and whole chicken.

In view of this, Government is imposing a Price Cap on the wholesale price of a bag of cement at D285 and a cap on the retail price at D305 with immediate effect.

Any entity/person found selling cement at any price above the capped prices will be subject to the full penalty of the law as stipulated in the Consumer Protection Act

2014. The General Public is also encouraged to report any incidence of cement sales above the capped price to MOTIE or the Gambia Competition and Consumer Protection Commission for immediate action.

The dealers in cement are hereby reminded that the act of hoarding is against the Hoarding (prohibition) Act, No.8 of 2009.

The General Public is hereby informed that the Ministry of Trade, Industry, Regional Integration and Employment, as part of its monitoring of prices of commodities has observed with great concern the continuous hikes in the prices of some of these commodities, especially cement.

Following these observations, the Ministry has conducted a series of consultations with the relevant stakeholders, and it was confirmed that there is a disproportional increase between the wholesale and retail prices of cement. The factory price ranges from D265 to D285 whilst the retail price has ranged from D340 to D400 over the past few weeks.

The Ministry of Trade, Industry, Regional Integration and Employment (MOTIE) wishes to inform that the Essential Commodities Act enacted by  the  National Assembly in 2015 serves to ensure that, in the interest of the General Public, the importation, distribution and retailing of essential commodities in The Gambia is regulated to ensure its availability at fair and reasonable prices . By this declaration, cement is now classified as an essential commodity in line with the Essential Commodities Act 2015. As such, all importers, distributors  and  retailers  of  cement are required to obtain a license from MOTIE with  immediate effect  in  line with  the Act.

In addition to cement, all importers, distributors and major retailers of the following essential commodities are reminded to obtain a license from MOTIE by 1s t of May 2021: rice, sugar, edible oil, onio ns, potatoes, flo ur, chicken legs and whole chicken.

In view of this, Government is imposing a Price Cap on the wholesale price of a bag of cement at D285 and a cap on the retail price at D305 with immediate effect.

Any entity/person found selling cement at any price above the capped prices will be subject to the full penalty of the law as stipulated in the Consumer Protection Act

2014. The General Public is also encouraged to report any incidence of cement sales above the capped price to MOTIE or the Gambia Competition and Consumer Protection Commission for immediate action.

The dealers in cement are hereby reminded that the act of hoarding is against the Hoarding (prohibition) Act, No.8 of 2009.”

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