FG to sanction trade associations hiking food prices indiscriminately
The Federal Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (FCCPC) has said it will sanction members of trade associations who engage in indiscriminate hiking of prices of food items.
Chief Executive Officer of FCCPC, Babatunde Irukera, said this on Tuesday at a forum organised by the commission to discuss fair food prices – themed, ‘Fair food prices in Nigeria: A high-level forum for better competition’.
According to Irukera, the federal government would ensure there is no room for anti-competitive practices and irrational hikes in food prices.
“We will continue to monitor the market, and where we find that prices are excessive or find exploitative conduct, or find that consumers are being taken advantage of, we will intervene. One of the ways of intervening is unlocking the bottlenecks,” Irukera said.
“Associations that come together to determine at what price beans should be sold, associations that come together to decide that nobody in a particular market should take yam, beans or rice from any other person except their members, we will proceed against them.
“Some trade unions had constituted cartels to engage in anti-competitive practices that have led to price gouging of basic food items.”
Irukera explained that it is important to take a hard line against indiscriminate food price hikes, especially at a time when food security has been declared a national emergency.
He added that competition regulation and consumer protection is not only to regulate the big companies. It is not only to regulate the formal sector but it is also to regulate the informal sector.
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