Traders want government to investigate cause of commodity price spike

Traders have called on the government to investigate the cause of the surge in commodity prices in the country.

They allege that some manufacturers deliberately cut production to create a shortage and raise prices due to increased demand for their products.

“The government should investigate the cause of the price spike as we are getting reports that some manufacturers are cutting production with the intention of taking advantage of the situation to make money,” the United spokesman said. Arcaders, Traders and Entrepreneurs Association (UATEA), Moses Rwegaba.

The traders’ request came at a time when Uganda Bureau of Statistics (UBOS) officials have also tasked the government to investigate the matter.

“Something is wrong because the soap tax came into force in July. Assuming there was a lag effect, our data shows that in July prices had not changed much. The government must therefore investigate this matter,” UBOS executive director Chris Mukiza said in a press release issued over the weekend.

Traders’ woes began early this year (around February) when commodity prices for soap, sugar, cooking oil and daub oil, among others, began to rise.

At the end of February, UBOS statistics indicated that the prices of certain products such as soap and other detergents had increased by 85%. For example, a bar of soap currently sells for between 8,000 shillings and 10,000 shillings from 3,500 shillings (at the beginning of the year).

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