Association battling price increment

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Water bottlers association denounces unreasonable price increment of the product by retailers meanwhile there is no change at the factory.
Ethiopian Bottled Water, Soft Drink, Fruit and Vegetable Manufacturing Industries Association (EBSFMIA) that met with media on Thursday April 2 stated that members of the association do not make any price increment on their products.
The association said that it has learnt that price increment on products is observed in the past few weeks in relation with the outbreak of coronavirus at the retail market.
“We have confirmed that the price of bottled water is sold with a higher profit margin at retail markets, which is totally unacceptable,” the association said.
“It called relevant government body to control those who illegally hike the price of basic needs,” the association stated.
It recalled that based on EBSFMIA code of conduct the manufacturer selling price range is set by the association and is revised every one or two months. Currently the price of manufacturing product price range is reduced in relation with the recently revised excise tax, production increment and lower demand observed recently, according to the information that Capital obtained from the association.
At the same time the distribution rate that is handled by separate distributing agents is also going well but the price at the final sellers has extraordinary profit margin, which is baseless, the association claimed.
The government disclosed that the price of some basic commodities have shown increment in the past couple of weeks after the announcement of the first COVID 19 case in the country. Bottled water is one of the products that shows unreasonable price increment.
It has also taken nationwide measures on illegal traders. On Thursday April 2 the number of illegal traders penalized by the government has reached over 15,000.
Ashenafi Merid, General Manager of EBSFMIA, said bottlers are responsible to follow their agents.
“Currently bottlers have ample supply and due to that any price increment is not acceptable,” he told Capital.
Consumer Protection and Trade Competition and Ministry of Trade and Industry are expected to control retailers.
Getnet Ashenafi, legal expert at Consumer Protection and Trade Competition, appreciated the initiative of the association to protect their consumer and said that other sectors should follow the same. He stated that measures are continuing on illegal actors.
Solomon Tadele Director General of Food, Beverage and Pharmaceutical Industry Development Institute, which is under Ministry of Trade Industry, disclosed that despite public transports suspension to regions, food items continue to reach the market.
EBSFMIA has more than 120 members and most of them are water bottlers.