Price Controller, Marokon Alilee, has expressed concern over exorbitant prices of fruits in Port Vila markets.
“Local fruits such as mangoes, pawpaw, citrus, passionfruit, breadfruit, nakavika and others which do not require watering or much tending to are being sold at exorbitant prices,” said Alilee..
“While the Price Controller appreciates other vegetables such as pineapples and root crops like yams, taro need tending to and a higher price is justified, fruits do not need much care and should be sold at reasonable prices.”
He added, “Now that TC Hola has damaged fruit trees and gardens, supplies will be limited in the coming days. Sellers at the market are requested not to take advantage of limited supplies to charge high prices. Consumers are asked to bargain if they know they are being overcharged”.
The Price Controller said he had discussions with the Manager of Port Vila market house and is looking at ways to ensure prices in the Port Vila local markets are reasonable.
The Price Control Bureau is reminding all local market vendors that under the Price Control Act, Price Controller can regulate prices.
However, because the Vanuatu Government has an open market policy, Price Controller, Marokon Alilee does not wish to over regulate prices but rather allow the market forces to play, he said.