By Vasinatta Yama – EM TV News, Port Moresby
Papua New Guinea’s Independent Consumer and Competition Commission (ICCC) is concerned that business houses in PNG are doing an injustice to ordinary consumers.
ICCC Commissioner, Paulus Ain, said there has been a cumulative decrease of 43.9 per cent in global fuel prices over the last 15 months, yet there hasn’t been any decrease to the prices of goods and services domestically.
Commissioner Ain said there are factors that contribute to high operating business costs, but given the cumulative decrease, consumers should now be paying less for some goods and services.
The ICCC is appealing to the business community, particularly the transport sector, manufacturing, wholesale and retail industries to share the benefits of the lower fuel prices with their customers, by reducing the prices of the goods and services they provide.
From July 2014 to December 2015, global crude oil prices have decreased by a total of 69 per cent. This has resulted in the decrease of domestic retail prices for petrol by 36.1 per cent, diesel by 48 per cent and kerosene by 47.6 per cent.
The ICCC cannot force anyone to reduce their prices, but if business houses do not comply, the ICCC will have to regulate it.
This means that the ICCC will have to do price controlling of some goods and services, instead of just monitoring.
The ICCC will also meet with the Chamber of Commerce to discuss the matter.