Friday, December 3

Lowering of face mask ceiling price still in discussion


Nanta (second right) shows a thumbs up when posing for a photograph during his working visit to Medidata factory. — Bernama photo

KUALA SELANGOR: The government’s proposal to reduce the ceiling price of three-layer face mask under RM1 is still in discussion with manufacturers and local suppliers to maintain the quality of the product.

Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs Minister Datuk Alexander Nanta Linggi said the ministry has to be careful in reducing the ceiling price to ensure local manufacturers produce face mask at reasonable cost.

He added that the proposal to lower the ceiling price of three-layer face mask also depended on the capability of manufacturers and availability of the product in the market.

“We know there is adequate three-layer face mask in the market but we are evaluating the overall situation to determine the ceiling price of the product in the market.

“We will see further stabilisation of face mask price and supply this month. Maybe we will reduce the price of face mask in October,” he told a media conference after a working visit to Medidata Sdn Bhd factory here yesterday.

Nanta said for the time being the country is not producing its own ‘melt blown filter’ which is a raw material used in the production of face mask causing the high price of the product during the early phases of Covid-19 outbreak earlier.

“We hope in future, the country would produce the material locally so that we do not have to import them.

“Hopefully, there would be initiatives by manufacturers to produce the material as encouraged by the government,” he said.

In another development, Nanta said the government has no authority to control and set the ceiling price of services by hair salons said to be expensive during the Recovery Movement Control Order (RMCO).

“What we can control is that they must display the prices of their services. Besides it would be seen as unhealthy for traders if we were to control all prices.

“This way, we protect the rights of consumers to know the price before obtaining services and purchasing products,” he said. — Bernama