KUCHING: PBB Youth Bureau Economy chief Pandi Suhaili welcomes the disclosure made by the Deputy Minister of Domestic Trade, Cooperatives and Consumerism Datuk Rohani Abdul Karim that the government has taken steps to address the shortage of chicken in the market.
He said many consumers experienced relief with the disclosure because the average price of chicken currently hovers between RM8.50 and RM9.50 per kg, which is costly.
“We hope that the ministry can act fast to normalise market price with steps that would address the matter,” he said when contacted yesterday.
He also hoped that the rakyat would be patient as the government is now making serious efforts to bring down the price for the benefit of the people in Sarawak.
“As usual the oppositions will be quick to blame the increase of the price of chicken on the government.
“However, the rakyat should not listen to this because the increase is due to a shortage in the market,” he said, adding that the present shortage was a result of the high demand on the supply of chicken for the recent Raya celebration.
On Sunday, Rohani said the present shortage of chickens was only a temporary issue and several steps have been initiated to tackle the problem.
“This is a temporary shortage due to a gap in replenishing the supply (of chicken) after the festive season (Hari Raya). We are working with the Ministry of Agriculture and Agro-based Industry on this as replenishment of chickens is under their jurisdiction.
“One of the options is to issue temporary import permits to suppliers to get chickens from authorised countries. That is the fastest way to normalise the supply because it takes at least 45 days before breeders can harvest their chickens,” she told reporters.
She also disclosed that her ministry only started to receive complaints on the shortage after the two-week price control campaign, which was made in conjunction with Hari Raya.
“After the campaign was over, we have no control on the price. However, consumers must be smart now. They can check the price at our portal (1Malaysia). In fact, consumers can still get chickens at RM8 per kg in Kuching,” Rohani pointed out.