Riyadh — Dr. Majid Al-Qasabi, the Saudi Minister of Commerce, confirmed taking all appropriate measures to prevent price manipulations of consumer goods.
Saudi Minister of Commerce, Dr. Majid Al-Qasabi, said the COVID-19 pandemic was an economic, social and psychological tsunami. It is considered the biggest crisis to have hit the world.
Dr. Al-Qasabi said in a press conference on the price hike that the impact of rising prices and inflation is a crisis that affects every family and every home.
Dr. Al-Qasabi said five global events have led to the price increase in the past two years.
He said that the 2020 coronavirus led to restricted travel and transportation. Then, after the pandemic recovery, the sudden increase in demand versus supply in 2021.
Al-Qasabi said that the suspension of navigation through the Suez Canal, too, had had a significant impact on the supply chain. Then again, in July 2021, the second phase of COVID-19 again suspended the supply chains.
And last but not least, the Russia-Ukraine crisis has broken the camel’s back. The corona pandemic and the Ukrainian crisis have disrupted commodity supplies globally.
Rationing strategic exports by certain countries have severely impacted the commodity price even further. The affected commodities include wheat, fodder, sugar, poultry, and meat.
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“Saudi Arabia as a part of the world is affected by global events, but the importance lies in how to face crises.”
Dr. Al-Qasabi confirmed his ministry monitors 217 commodities daily and takes appropriate measures to control manipulation or exaggeration in prices.
The minister of commerce confirmed its supervisory teams had carried out over 640,000 operations to monitor the prices of goods. Twenty-seven thousand incidences of violations were reported, and violators were held accountable.
The minister confirmed it would take all appropriate actions to prevent manipulated price hikes.
He added the food security committee also monitors the availability of commodities and is an additional measure to confront the crises.
The minister of commerce stated that the Kingdom’s leadership realized the global repercussions on food prices and essential commodities.
Through this crisis, it had recently issued the approval based on what Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman presented with an aid package to support deserving families to face the price hike.
It is noteworthy that the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques, King Salman issued Monday a royal order approving an allocation of SR20 billion to face rising global prices, including SR10 billion for beneficiaries of social security and the Citizen Account Program.
Crown Prince Mohammed had stressed earlier the need to consider the neediest citizens in the face of international developments that resulted in rising costs of some basic requirements.
After the press conference, Dr. Al-Qasabi called on everyone to report price manipulation by calling 1900.