Qatar moves towards keeping Ramadan food prices under control

July 5, 2010
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Qatar has moved towards controlling commodity prices during Ramadan, the month with the highest consumption levels, by freezing the prices of at least 160 basic food and non-food items.

The prices will be frozen from July 25 until the end of the holy month on September 11. Ramadan is expected to start on August 11, depending on the sighting of the crescent.

The move, seen as part of the business and trade ministry’s plans to help make essential items available at affordable rates to consumers, will ensure that wholesalers and retailers do not raise the prices of essential commodities during the holy month when demand for several food and non-food items goes up substantially, Qatari Daily The Peninsula reported.

Syrian goats as well as mutton will, for the first time, be made available at subsidised rates during the fasting month. The subsidy will be provided by the Qatar Meat and Livestock Company, Mawashi.

Shaikh Jassem bin Jabor Al Thani, the head of the Consumer Protection Department at the Ministry of Business and Trade, last week said that the number of food and non-food items whose prices are being frozen during Ramadan would be increased this year for the benefit of consumers.

Food items such as wheat flour, rice, sugar, milk and milk products like butter as well as fruit juice are in high demand during the fasting month. Earlier, traders used to hike their prices and that prompted the consumer protection watchdog to act and impose a freeze on their prices during Ramadan.

The basic non-food items whose consumption increased considerably during the holy month include tissue papers, aluminium foils and detergents of all kinds.

Officials said that effective measures would be put in place to check violations and that there would be a zero-tolerance towards those who break the rules.

         

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About the author

Born August 3, 1960 in Monastir, Tunisia
Career
Media career:
  • ABC News (Tunisia)
  • Bahrain Tribune
  • Gulf News
  • Bahrain Television News
Teaching career:
  • Monastir (Tunisia)
  • University of Bahrain
Education
  • MA  Mass Communications, University of Leicester
  • BA  in English & US literature and studies, University of Tunis

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