Govt to revise Supply Policy ’12

- Post Report, Kathmandu

Jun 23, 2017-

The government is preparing to revise the existing Supply Policy 2012 in order to make markets work for consumers and ensure that they have adequate and affordable choices.

The Ministry of Supplies said that the new policy would address numbers of grievances like supply, price fluctuation, and scarcity problem prevalent in the country. It would also discourage anticompetitive practices that have been harming consumers in the form of higher prices, lower quality and limited choices. In June, a five-member delegation of the ministry had visited India to study the supply mechanism in India. They had also observed prices of daily essentials which are normally exported to Nepal.

“There is a need to contextualise the Supply Policy in line with the current market scenario,” said Mukunda Prasad Paudel, joint secretary at the Supply Ministry. “We will analyse the cost differences on same type of products imported from India and see the differences on supply chain of the both countries.”

Kumar Prasad Dahal, director general of Department of Supply Management and Protection of Consumers Interests, said they have not been able to inspect the prices on imported commodities like clothes in the market. 

“The Customs Offices check the details of products, but prices are hiked arbitrarily by the retailers. We do not have mandate to inspect the prices of imported clothes in the market,” he said, adding that there are lots of issues that needs to be addressed by the new policy. 

Excessive pricing is another abusive conduct widely prevalent in Nepali market. Authorities rarely enforce competition laws against excessive pricing by firms given the practical difficulties in determining what constitutes an excessive price and the effects of such practices.

Komal Bahadur Khatri, under secretary at the Supplies Ministries, said that even they do not have legal rights to monitor traders. “The ministry has extensive responsibilities to inspect the marketplace and service area relating to the consumers interest. However, monitoring imported products does not come under our jurisdiction,” said Khatri. “This has resulted to unusual scarcity of petroleum products, sugar, salt and other imported goods in the market.” Paudel said that the new policy was essential to make goods and service available to the consumers in efficient, qualitative and easiest manner. 

Published: 23-06-2017 08:28

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