Commerce Minister:Drought could push up prices of certain items

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BANGKOK, 13 July 2015 – Minister of Commerce Gen Chatchai Sarikalya has admitted that the drought situation might have an impact on product prices, insisting that internal trade officials are monitoring against unfair pricing.

As a consequence of the prolonged shortage of water across the country, Gen Chatchai pointed out that the prices of some types of agricultural produce will probably increase slightly. However, he affirmed the ministry will not adopt a price intervention measure.

Instead, the Department of Internal Trade has initially been instructed to send its officials into markets in a bid to inspect product prices. If any vendors are found to be overpricing their goods or taking advantage of customers, the minister said legal action will be enforced against them.

Gen Chatchai also voiced belief that the drought situation will begin to ease off soon, citing the Meteorological Department’s forecast suggesting that continuous rainfall will occur nationwide from mid-July onwards.