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Government Puts Commodity Prices Under Control Amidst Covid-19
Juliana Vandy
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Government Puts Commodity Prices Under Control Amidst Covid-19

Government Puts Commodity Prices Under Control Amidst Covid-19

By: Finda Judith Ngaujah

 Strategic Communications Unit,

Ministry of Information and Communications

 

The Minister of Trade and Industry, Dr. Edward Hinga Sandy, has informed the press that amidst the Corona pandemic government through the Ministry of Trade has been able to put the prices of essential commodities under control and also ensured that commodities are available in the market.

Speaking at the weekly press briefing in the conference room of the Ministry of Information and Communications on Thursday, 28th January 2021, he explained that since the outbreak of the disease, it has had a huge impact on trade globally, Sierra Leone being no exception.

He said that importers are one of the people that have been seriously affected as borders have remained closed and freight for containers increased exponentially thus creating immense challenge.

According to Dr Sandy, there has been low productivity across the globe with increase in the prices of petroleum products, saying they are looking at the global market to see what impact it will have on the country.

He however noted that Sierra Leone still has the cheapest pump prices in the sub-region in spite of the challenges posed by the pandemic, adding that if there is any dramatic change in that regard the ministry will let the public know.

The production of local goods, the Trade Minister furthered, has increased and caused the prices of foodstuffs like vegetable oil and flour to stabilize compared to places like Liberia that Sierra Leone is presently supplying flour, the reason why the Guinea border issue has not had much impact on such commodities. 

He said that foreign direct investment is still on course as industries are interested in investing in the country and are negotiating with companies that want to undertake value addition services such as turning timber into furniture and processing cocoa into chocolate and other products.

Dr Sandy stated that the Ministry's intervention has helped address the price of sachet water which was skyrocketing. He said the price of bundle sachet water remains Le3, 500 and not Le5, 000. He made it clear that suppliers of the sachet used for the production of sachet water are going to sell at a minimal cost to the producers and that the Ministry is ready to get rid of all illegal water production companies in the country.

He said the Ministry has ensured that there are enough essential commodities in the country that will last up to September this year.

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