(MENAFN - Khaleej Times) Committee reviews mechanism for firms about raising prices
sultan bin saeed al mansouri and other officials at first meeting of supreme committee for consumer protection for 2014. — supplied photo
consumer protection is among the top priorities for the ministry of economy as it ensures social stability for citizens and residents who are the end users of products and services and constitute the most important link in the economic chain according to sultan bin saeed al mansouri the uae’s minister of economy.
his comments came during the first meeting of the supreme committee for consumer protection for 2014 which was held last week in dubai.
al mansouri said: “the initiatives launched by the ministry of economy and the supreme committee for consumer protection have succeeded in maintaining market stability and have reduced attempts at monopolistic behaviour including arbitrary raising of prices.
“i have repeatedly emphasised the ministry’s keenness to support consumer purchasing capacity and preserve the rights of the consumers. the ministry is keen to make them aware of their rights and accordingly guide them to follow the right consumer behaviour within the framework of the federal law no 24 of 2006 for consumer protection.”
the committee reviewed a series of reports outlining key issues relevant to the performance of markets. among the most notable was a report on the implementation of the cabinet decision no (1) for 2014 stipulating terms and conditions of solutions with regard to offenses committed against consumers by companies. the committee additionally reviewed a report on the recall and recovery processes in the uae and its implementation. applications submitted by companies seeking to raise prices of their products were also examined. regarding the report on the implementation of the cabinet decision no (1) for 2014 the supreme committee proposed that the ministry should establish a reconciliation committee to consider requests submitted for convivial solutions relating to violations of the consumer protection act. the committee also called for the identification of such solutions depending on the type of violation. a review procedure to identify harmonious out-of-court solutions has already been set up by the cabinet.
the supreme committee also reviewed the proposed mechanism for informing the companies about its decisions on their requests to raise prices based on article (4) of the federal law no 24 of 2006 on consumer protection. in this regard dr hashim saeed al nuaimi director of consumer protection department of the ministry of economy stated that the ministry has informed all retail outlets and restaurants to apply for requests to raise prices. he added that the ministry of economy has prepared an official form to be used by companies when making such requests.
at the end of the meeting the supreme committee for consumer protection reviewed the price fixing practices of the commercial sector. the exercise was aligned with the consumer protection department’s coordination with outlets and cooperative societies that have pledged to keep prices locked for select items. the number of items for which prices were locked totaled nearly 1000 in 2012 and rose to 1600 in 2013. the number is expected to rise to 3000 commodities by the end of 2014. the decision to lock prices is part of the ministry of economy’s ongoing efforts to promote competition and consumer protection in the uae.