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Pick n Pay, Spar, Makro… most big retailers have outlets guilty of price gouging

26 March 2020 1:16 PM
Tags:
Spar
Pick n Pay
Competition Commission
Kieno Kammies
Checkers
Makro
Thembinkosi Bonakele
coronavirus in south afrca
covid-19 in south africa
Price gouging
exploitive pricing

"We’ve seen an upsurge of complaints in the past two days," says the Competition Commission’s Thembinkosi Bonakele.

The Competition Commission is investigating 30 cases of price gouging on Covid-19 essentials such as hand sanitiser, masks and toilet paper.

By Wednesday, the Commission had issued “certificates” against these retailers accused of exploitive pricing:

  • A Spar branch in Silverlakes, Gauteng, for raising the price of Dettol antiseptic

  • A Spar in Plattekloof, Cape Town, for hand sanitiser

  • North Safety in Cape Town for hand sanitiser

  • Checkers Hyper in Kempton Park for toilet paper

  • A Makro in Durban for toilet paper

  • National Overalls in Gauteng for face masks

  • Bloemfontein Pharmacy in the Free State for gloves

  • Mopane Pharmacy in Mpumalanga for face masks

  • Seaside Pharmacy in Table View in the Western Cape for face masks

  • A Pick n Pay in Milnerton, Western Cape, for hand sanitiser


Also, read:


The Commission has issued at least eight additional certificates, but they haven't yet been confirmed by the receivers.

Kieno Kammies interviewed Thembinkosi Bonakele, Commissioner at Competition Commission.

If it [price gouging] gets worse there may need to be specific interventions that would restrict the operations of markets…

Thembinkosi Bonakele, Commissioner - Competition Commission

We’ve seen an upsurge of complaints in the past two days… things that are used for coronavirus control… masks are a big problem… Prices for alcohol are very high…

Thembinkosi Bonakele, Commissioner - Competition Commission

The worrying thing for me is that we’re also starting to see this on daily essentials like food… rice, cereals, cooking oil… and toilet paper…

Thembinkosi Bonakele, Commissioner - Competition Commission

We’re getting a lot of complaints about garage shops…

Thembinkosi Bonakele, Commissioner - Competition Commission

We had a conference call with all the CEOs of the largest retailers… We’re appealing to them to cooperate. If markets don’t work… then we really have a problem… It’s not in the interest of business to exploit the situation.

Thembinkosi Bonakele, Commissioner - Competition Commission

For more detail, listen to the interview in the audio below.


26 March 2020 1:16 PM
Tags:
Spar
Pick n Pay
Competition Commission
Kieno Kammies
Checkers
Makro
Thembinkosi Bonakele
coronavirus in south afrca
covid-19 in south africa
Price gouging
exploitive pricing

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