The Ministry of Economy will continue efforts through the year and under all circumstances in monitoring the prices of products and consumer items to achieve the interest for consumers, traders and suppliers, and to maintain the stability and market's balance.
In statement released on Tuesday, the ministry said it will play its role continually in protecting the consumer in association with its partners on both federal and local government levels.
"The ministry will cooperate with sale outlets, traders and suppliers, who have expressed and are showing cooperation out of their keenness on the stability of the markets", the statement said.
Mohammed Ahmed bin Abdul Aziz Al Shehi, undersecretary of the ministry of economy for economic affairs, said the ministry gives the consumer protection the top priority, and treats it as a basic and core issue that contributes to boosting the country's social security.
"The consumer protection department at the ministry continues efforts in keeping a close watch on markets and the prices of consumer items and commodities on the basis of the federal law No 24 for 2006 on consumer protection and amendments as per the federal law No 7 of 2011 on consumer protection, and handles any violations by enforcing the consumer protection law," he added
The two statutes, according to him, toughen the penalties against the traders who unjustifiably hike the prices, and prohibit monopoly of commodities and defraud the consumers, especially in storing food items.
Under the purview of the consumer protection law, the consumer protection department at the ministry undertakes supervising the implementation of the general policy for protecting the consumer in collaboration with the bodies' concerned in the country in confronting the illegal trade practices which cause damage to the consumer, he noted.
It also raises the standard of awareness among the consumers and make their rights known, he said, adding it keeps a watchful eye on prices movement and works on curbing the unjustified prices hike, and also work on achieving the principle of competition and combating monopoly.
Al Shehi appealed to consumers countrywide to inform the ministry and the bodies concerned in case of any increase in the prices after the announcement of the decision, and call the consumer protection hotline 600522225.