Mr Saktiandi Supaat: To ask the Minister for Trade and Industry in light of the prevalent increases in prices of food and private hire transport fares (a) what measures have the Government considered to ensure that such prices do not drift persistently higher, in addition to the oversight by the Committee Against Profiteering (“CAP”); (b) whether the CAP will establish guidelines for businesses in order to ensure that the price increases do not harden and remain high even when global pressures ease.
Written Answer by Minister for Trade and Industry Gan Kim Yong
1. Global supply disruptions, due in large part to the Russia-Ukraine conflict and the pandemic, have fueled inflationary pressures globally. As a small and open economy, Singapore’s domestic prices will inevitably be affected.
2. The Committee Against Profiteering (CAP)’s role is to review and investigate feedback on unjustified price increases of essential goods and services, using the GST increase as a cover. The CAP does not interfere with businesses’ pricing decisions per se but issues guidelines to encourage businesses to be transparent with their prices and not misrepresent the reasons for any price increase.
3. To prevent the price increases from being excessive and “hardened”, we are working with industry partners, including major retailers, to ensure that the prices of daily necessities and food items are competitive and affordable. Initiatives such as the Price Kaki price comparison app will also improve price transparency and introduce more competitive pressures into pricing decisions.