Some 275 basic food and non-food items, including white meat, tissue papers and detergents, will be available at discounted prices from Wednesday until the end of Ramadan.
Ramadan is likely to begin from July 21 and last until August 18 or 19. Last year, some 265 food and non-food products were included in the Ramadan fair price list.
The list is issued by the Ministry of Business and Trade and circulated to major retail outlets making the Ramadan prices binding on them as well as on the smaller outlets as well.
The Ministry has been fixing maximum retail prices of many basic food and non-food items of daily use during the holy month for the past several years in a bid to prevent possible price manipulations by retailers as well as wholesalers.
The Ministry under which falls the state-monitored consumer rights watchdog (the Consumer Protection Department or CPD), began resorting to price controls following increasing public complaints about retailers and wholesalers allegedly manipulating prices of several basic food and non-food products during Ramadan taking undue advantage of rising demand.
Qatar News Agency (QNA) reported yesterday that the Ministry has already drawn up the list of the 275 items and has in fact begun distributing it to major outlets.
Edible oil, white meat, dairy products — including, butter, yogurt and milk — juices of all types, rice, wheat flour, frozen vegetables and aluminum foils that are used for wrapping cooked food, are included in the fair price list.
“The price controls are aimed at making sure that commodities of daily use are available at suitable prices to the common man and that traders do not indulge in price manipulations during Ramadan,” the Ministry was quoted as saying by QNA.
The price list will be posted on the Ministry’s website (www.mbt.gov.qa) and made available to the media as well, QNA said.
The Minister of Business and Trade, H E Sheikh Jassem bin Abdul Aziz Al Thani, has issued a ministerial decision making the price controls effective from July 11 until the end of Ramadan, QNA added.
In another initiative, the Ministry, in coordination with the Qatari livestock company, Mawashi, will be making available livestock (mainly sheep from some Arab countries) available to Qatari citizens at discounted rates from July 15 until the end of Ramadan.
Distribution centers will be set up at different Abattoirs, at the central market as well as in Al Khor and Al Shamal, to sell sheep from Saudi Arabia and Jordan to nationals at between QR900 and QR950.
However, in order to prevent black marketing of the sheep, they will be slaughtered immediately after the purchase. Buyers will have to produce their identity (ID) cards.
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