By Godlove BAINKONG, Cameroon Tribune, 02-07-2014
Trade Minister and businessmen of the sector concerted on Tuesday on stocks and distribution.
Against a backdrop of readjustment in fuel prices, which took effect from yesterday July 1, 2014, the government of Cameroon informs the general public that prices of high consumer goods (rice, fish, table oil…) remain unchanged. Trade Minister, Luc Magloire Mbarga Atangana, made the disclosure yesterday during a concertation session with business people of the sectors.
Minister Mbarga Atangana noted that although the concertation fell within his traditional quarterly meeting with the businessmen to ensure that there is enough stock of the goods for national consumption, yesterday’s conclave, he said, was peculiar. Coming on the heels of government’s readjustment of fuel prices to save money for other growth-induced projects, the Minister said the concertations were to nib in the bud manipulations by unscrupulous business people which could range from speculation to price hikes. He noted that the readjustment in fuel prices has nothing to do with imported rice and very little on that produced locally likewise fish and so there is no room for price hikes whatsoever. “Importers and wholesalers have assured us that there is enough stock. We are then certain that the second quarter is guaranteed. Since 2008, there has not been any problem of supply in the market and it should not be the case now,” he said.
“We usually meet business people to discuss on the supply of the market and naturally on the level of the prices. But for the second quarter with the adjustment of fuel prices, we think that some dealers in these products can attempt to take advantage of this situation to increase prices of these products in the market. I have told them that government will never accept any increase in the price of these products” Minister Luc Magloire Mbarga Atangana intimated.
It emerged from the separate meetings that available stocks of imports and local production of rice is estimated at over 220,000 metric tons and could supply the national market for four to five months. Meanwhile for fish, stakeholders said there is enough stock for the months ahead pledging to do everything to maintain the price.
The Minister equally met with dealers in vegetable oils and other byproducts, flour and poultry to discuss and pass across the same message. Presidents of consumer trade unions who took part in the meeting pledged to sensitise consumers and to accompany control caravans scheduled for markets beginning this Wednesday.