Prices will be kept down as long as possible, says minister

Prices will be kept down as long as possible, says minister

Producers' needs must also be taken into account

Commerce Minister Jurin Laksanawisit says consumer prices will be kept down as long as possible, speaking after the regular cabinet meeting on Tuesday. (Photo: Arnun Chonmahatrakool)
Commerce Minister Jurin Laksanawisit says consumer prices will be kept down as long as possible, speaking after the regular cabinet meeting on Tuesday. (Photo: Arnun Chonmahatrakool)

The Commerce Ministry will ensure that prices of consumer goods are kept down for as long as possible, also taking producers' needs into account, the commerce minister said on Tuesday.

Jurin Laksanawisit said the ministry was trying to control prices to minimise the impact on consumers. However, manufacturers and farmers must also be taken care of. 

Therefore, the ministry was applying a "win-win model" in which farmers, manufacturers, businesses and consumers would jointly benefit, Mr Jurin said.

So far, the ministry had managed to peg prices in several categories.

Prices for a number of items had dropped in May. For example, the cost of Jasmine rice went down 22% for a 5-kilogramme bag, white rice fell by 28%, canned tuna 2%, oyster sauce 6%, black sweet sauce 10%, fish sauce 20% and construction materials and cement 5%, the minister said.

The cost of delivery via various online platforms had not increased because the ministry had fixed the cost of freight, he said.

“If capital costs are actually high and going higher, (the ministry) will look for a balance between fixing prices for as long as possible and avoiding a shortage of products.

"If manufacturers suffer huge losses, they will stop producing. We ask for cooperation in fixing prices. If they are unable to fix the price, they are told to raise prices by a minimum rate.

"For now, none are allowed to increase prices. The ministry will try to take the best care of everyone,’’ Mr Jurin said.

Mr Jurin earlier announced the ministry had not allowed any instant noodle producer to raise retail prices,  despite mounting calls from producers for an increase.

He pledged to maintain prices as long as possible to prevent negative effects on consumers.

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