Tuesday, March 2

Face mask ceiling prices to be lowered mid-August, says Nanta

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Datuk Alexander Nanta Linggi.
— Bernama photo

KUCHING: The wholesale and retail ceiling price of face masks will be reduced beginning Aug 15, said Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs Minister Datuk Alexander Nanta Linggi.

“The wholesale and retail ceiling price of face masks will be reduced to RM1.15 and RM1.20 respectively starting Aug 15, from the current RM1.45 and RM1.50 respectively,” he said in a reply to Dato Sri Rohani Abdul Karim (GPS-Batang Lupar) during question time at the Dewan Rakyat sitting today.

Nanta also assured the august House that there was sufficient supply of face masks in the market, in view of the federal government’s plan to make it mandatory to wear them in public spaces.

He said from Jan 29 to July 22, 43,000 premises had been inspected to monitor the price of face masks in the market and compounds amount to over RM300,000 were issued to 55 businesses.

Nanta said the ministry had taken actions against a private hospital under Section 11 of the Price Control and Anti-Profiteering Act 2011 for selling three-ply face masks exceeding the price ceiling set by the government.

“The ministry will take strict action against any business caught manipulating prices or increasing the price of goods without valid reasons.”

Nanta added the ministry was also monitoring the price of personal protective equipment (PPE) due to increased demand in the market and over 450 premises were inspected in this regard since June this year.

On a separate note, Nanta said the ministry was in the midst of discussion with the Ministry of Health to look into the suggestion of setting a price ceiling for medical drugs.