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‘Covid, Ukraine invasion fuel commodity prices hike’

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Gospel Kazako

Minister of Trade and Industry Mark Katsonga Phiri Wednesday attributed the rise in the cost of commodities to Covid and Russia’s invasion on Ukraine which have disrupted global commodities supply chains.

This has led to an increase in the cost of production of some essential commodities and transportation of material imported outside the country.

Nevertheless, Katsonga told journalists in Lilongwe that the government was doing everything possible to cushion the prices including engaging major private sector players.

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“We are engaging manufacturing companies of various products which have been affected, to see what they can do and how best we can support them to provide fair prices on the local market,” he said

Katsonga further said the government suspects sabotage by other big retailers, hence it has moved to investigate prices of raw materials and finished goods as a matter of comparison within and outside the country.

The trade and industry minister further warned that they would allow other people to import the commodity if cooking oil manufacturers do not reduce prices after removal of the Value Added Tax.

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Minister of Information Gospel Kazako said while the government will ensure that its citizens are protected, it has little control over the prices of fuel, which are dictated by the global market.

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