Prices of goods maintain despite petrol price cuts

Retail prices of oil and petrol dropped from 3 pm on October 3 following the latest adjustment by the Ministry of Industry and Trade, and the Ministry of Finance. The retail price of petrol is about VN22,000 a liter. However, the prices of many goods in Ho Chi Minh City have only decreased slightly, and even some items have increased.
Prices of goods maintain despite petrol price cuts ảnh 1 Consumers are buying things at a supermarket in HCMC (PHoto: SGGP)
Data on prices of imported goods to wholesale markets in Ho Chi Minh City show that many kinds of fresh fruits and vegetables, fresh meat, and fish have basically decreased slightly. For example, the price of chayote grown in the Central Highlands Province of Lam Dong’s Da Lat decreased by 8.43 percent, cabbage decreased by 12.12 percent and pork of all kinds decreased from 6 percent - 7 percent compared to the previous 20 days.
However, prices of commodities in traditional markets, grocery stores, or eateries stayed the same. Worse, currently, sea fish and some vegetables grown in Da Lat have increased by about 10 percent compared to 10 days ago, said Hoang Van Khu, owner of a restaurant eating country dishes on Phan Huy Ich Street in Go Vap District meanwhile Ms. Nguyen Thi Vui, owner of Bien Que restaurant also in Go Vap District also disclosed that although the price of petrol has decreased, the price of goods has not decreased.
According to traders in wholesale markets, the input prices have increased by 10 percent on average since the beginning of the year, and commodities transported to traditional markets, grocery stores, and restaurants increased by about 30 percent. Many small traders explained that the cost of transportation and labor increased, leading to an increase in the price of goods.
Meanwhile, prices of items remained stable or even decreased slightly at most supermarkets. Specifically, at the supermarket system GO!, BigC, fresh food items have cooled down, with discounts of up to 30 percent. For instance, prices of pork were down 3 percent-6 percent and the price of salmon 30 percent in comparison to the previous time when the prices of petrol hiked. Most other essential commodities remained at the same selling price after gasoline prices dropped on October 3.
Representatives of Co.opmart, MM Mega, and Emart supermarket systems said that they are still offering promotions to attract customers, but have no plans to reduce prices because their suppliers have not yet adjusted prices since the prices of gasoline fell.
Prices of goods maintain despite petrol price cuts ảnh 2 Consumers are buying things at a supermarket in HCMC (PHoto: SGGP)
Mr. Le Huu Tinh, Senior Marketing Manager of Emart Go Vap said that although gasoline prices have been heavily reduced many times, suppliers have not yet adjusted their selling prices; therefore, the supermarket is currently negotiating with suppliers to bring about a reasonable price. Now, the supermarket will launch promotions to reduce the prices of goods to support consumers.
The General Statistics Office has just released the update of the price report for September 2022. The price report has shown that the price index of food and food service groups in September increased by 0.18 percent compared to the previous month, making the price index of pepper overall consumption (CPI) increase by 0.06 percent meanwhile food prices decreased by 0.08 percent and other foodstuff surged by 0.16 percent and dining skyrocketed by 0.32 percent. It is forecasted that in the last months of the year, food prices may continue to increase due to high demand and input material prices are still on an upward trend.
Explaining why prices of goods have not been reduced, many manufacturers and distributors said that prices of goods in the market depend on many factors, not only on the prices of gasoline. For example, to make food, many businesses in Ho Chi Minh City depend on domestic raw materials and import raw materials. Imports were greatly affected by the increase in import prices; plus, international shipping costs increased by 5-15 times, depending on the shipping area.
As for domestic materials, after the Covid-19 epidemic, although farming gradually recovered, farmers returned to production, but it has not yet fully recovered; as a result, there has been sometimes a shortage of raw materials for food production. Commodity prices are being influenced by many factors, including the cost of transportation, packaging, materials, electricity, and water which have not shown any sign of cooling down, so prices of many foods and goods are still high, said a director of a food processing business. To keep the market stable, experts say, the business community needs to actively prepare all conditions to boost production and business activities, and ensure the supply and circulation of goods.
In order to ensure supply and prices, the People's Committee in Ho Chi Minh City has just directed the implementation of price management solutions in the last months of 2022. Under the direction of the municipal People’s Committee, departments and sectors receive dossiers that declare the prices of goods to regularly monitor. Departments and sectors should make a report to the city People's Committee if they detect an unreasonable increase in price compared to price declarations in files.
The Department of Finance was asked to monitor market price movements of important and essential commodities to take appropriate management measures for proactive analysis and prediction of market developments to help the Ministry of Finance and city administrations’ timely guidance. Along with that, the Department of Finance and the Department of Industry and Trade and relevant departments will give advice to the People's Committee of Ho Chi Minh City on price management for commodities in the city's market stabilization program.
The Department of Industry and Trade was urged to increase its supervision of the supply and demand of essential consumer goods and services, especially food and food products.

By Lac Phong – Translated by Anh Quan

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