As Ramadan approaches, there is dissatisfaction with the rise in the prices of basic commodities and questions about oversight.

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AmmanNet – Hadeel Al-biss


Recently citizens have expressed their dissatisfaction with the rise in the prices of many basic commodities in the local markets, considering that this rise has come at an inappropriate time given the approaching month of Ramadan, which is witnessing significant rises in prices, which may burden many people in light of the difficult economic conditions that are affecting them.


With the beginning of the month of Ramadan every year, the demand for food supplies increases, leading to a significant increase in prices, in addition to some merchants exploiting this period to increase prices excessively.


However, the rise in prices this year came some time before the beginning of the month of Ramadan, as there was an increase in prices on some types of vegetables, fruits, and some food items, in addition to the prices of meat.


Meat prices are unrealistic.


According to estimates by the Livestock Breeders Association, local markets are witnessing an increase in the prices of both local and imported meat, as the prices of imported Romanian meat in some butcher shops have reached 9 dinars per kilogram, while the price of local meat has risen to between 10 and 12 dinars. The Association described this rise as “unrealistic and exaggerated.”


The association attributes the rise in the prices of local meat and some imported meat, like Romanian meat, to the lack of supply and the approaching month of Ramadan.


Zaal Al-Kawalit, the association’s president, pointed out that at this time of year the supply of local meat is usually small, as it is not a season for sale, whereas the month of Ramadan is, during which prices are particularly high.


He explained that some merchants resort to fattening sheep to sell them during the month of Ramadan to earn more, but expects this increase to be temporary, and pointed out necessity of opening the door to imports of various types of sheep to compensate for the shortage in supply in the local markets.


He also touched on how the events in Gaza have affected the decline in demand for meat by 40%, and how he expects these declines in purchasing power to continue during the month of Ramadan due to the decline in general economic conditions.


The Kingdom imports meat from 17 different countries, including live, chilled, and frozen meat, and Romanian, Spanish and Australian sheep, which compensates for the shortage of local sheep in the markets.


Unprecedented highs


Many citizens have also complained about the significant increase in the prices of some types of vegetables and fruits in local markets, calling on the concerned authorities to take the necessary measures to reduce these increases, especially with the approaching month of Ramadan.


The National Society for Consumer Protection received complaints from citizens regarding the significantly high prices of cucumbers, courgettes, and bananas, noting that these prices are exaggerated and do not reflect the cost of their production and quality during the same season.


The prices of cucumbers ranged between 80 piasters and one dinar, and local bananas more than one dinar and a quarter for the first variety and one dinar for the second variety, and zucchini one dinar per kilo.


The association's media advisor, Dr. Hussein Al-Amoush, explained that the association has noticed the increase in the prices of vegetables and fruits has exceeded approximately 20%, which is a percentage high for this time of the year.


Al-Amoush attributed this increase to the export operations in large quantities of some types of vegetables and fruits, which is considered unacceptable.


He pointed out that it is natural for prices to rise at the beginning of the month of Ramadan for all commodities, due to the increase in selling prices by merchants and the increasing demand for large quantities of food that citizens may consume during the month of Ramadan.


Don't buy when you're hungry.


To reduce consumer rush, which may lead to higher prices at the beginning of the month of Ramadan, the association will launch a national campaign titled “Do not buy when you are hungry” before the month of Ramadan. According to studies, the percentage of waste in the items that a fasting person buys before breaking the fast reaches 30 to 35%. .


The association has also called for the need to take all measures by the concerned authorities that would restore prices to what they were previously for these necessary commodities and monitor the development of the price movement of basic commodities of vegetables, fruits and food supplies so that they can control prices before and at the beginning of the month of Ramadan.


For its part, the government stressed the need to follow up with the concerned authorities to confront any possible increases in the prices of basic and food commodities, noting that what is required is the continued flow of goods at reasonable prices and high quality, especially with the approaching month of Ramadan.

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