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Upscale price-fixing probe, Govt advised

By SIMON MUNTEMBA

GOVERNMENT should bring in other investigative wings to work with the Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (CCPC) in probing the cartel behind price fixing of different commodities on the market, the National Traders of Edible Oils Association (NTEOA) has suggested.

NTEOA President, Sylvester Kaluwa, said there was need to supplement the CCPC’s efforts in bring to book the cartel behind price fixing.

Mr Kaluba in an interview complained that that the cost of importing palm oil into Zambia had increased from $ 750 per tonne last year during the same period to u$1,200 per tonne today without proper justification.

He said the exorbitant cooking oil prices was being caused by a cartel in the edible oil sector and called on Government to involve other investigative wings to work with CCPC price fixing on the market.

“There is a cartel in the edible oil sector which is controlling market prices of cooking oil, a situation which has resulted into exorbitant prices of the commodity. And we appeal to President Edgar Lungu to consider bringing more investigative wings into the matter so that concrete results should be uncovered,” he said.

Meanwhile, opposition Golden Party of Zambia leader, Jackson Silavwe said there was need to start cultivating business integrity from within to compete favourably internationally. Mr Silavwe expressed sadness that notable companies such as Lafarge Zambia Plc and Mpande Limestone had been penalised by CCPC for cement price fixing.

He said it was sad that cement price fixing was done at a time when the country was experiencing escalated cost of living and doing business.

Mr Silavwe hoped that the actions taken by CCPC served as enough warning to all well-meaning Zambian enterprises that could be in similar default.

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