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Saudi Arabia Investigates First Stockpiling Attempt

Saudi Arabia Investigates First Stockpiling Attempt

Tuesday, 24 March, 2020 - 09:30
Saudi Arabia Investigates First Stockpiling Attempt, Asharq Al-Awsat
Riyadh – Asharq Al-Awsat

Saudi market regulators struck with an iron fist as they started investigating the first case of illegal stockpiling of medical preventative products and price hiking. Authorities have been conducting inspections to prevent market manipulation amid the coronavirus crisis.


The Ministry of Commerce and Investment and the General Authority for Competition revealed that they are investigating several market violations related to the coronavirus crisis. Among these violations was the stockpiling of sterilizers and protective face masks and an agreement among suppliers to hoard large quantities of products and sell them at a higher price later.


The ministry and authority reaffirmed that coordination of efforts to the protection of the consumer and preserve healthy market competition are ongoing.


In a statement, the two entities asked consumers to file complaints from the new online app created, “Balagh Tijari,” through relevant websites, or by calling the joint call center.


Oversight teams from the ministry continued to follow-up on the markets in all regions of the Kingdom.


On Monday, they conducted 8,000 inspection visits in Riyadh to verify the availability of goods and asses the stocks in markets and outlets.


They had received 12,000 reports and complaints in the Riyadh region that included the hiking of prices of products and other commercial irregularities. The violations were addressed swiftly with violators receiving the just penalties.


In other news, the Saudi General Authority of Civil Aviation (GACA), in cooperation with the concerned authorities, announced that all of the Kingdom’s airports will continue to work as usual in the reception of air freight cargo around the clock.


The measures taken by GACA include requiring all relevant authorities and air freight companies operating in the Kingdom's airports to comply with health and safety requirements and precautionary measures to combat the novel coronavirus (Covid-19).


All the concerned departments have taken all the necessary precautions to sterilize and disinfect all the air cargo stations at the Kingdom's airports. Furthermore, medical checkpoints have been established in all stations for staff and visitors alike. This in addition to providing the working teams with all means of protection and prevention measures to ensure the flow of goods and services to all the Kingdom’s cities safely and securely.


GACA has called on all air cargo companies operating in the Kingdom's airports to implement the precautionary and preventive measures implemented at the Kingdom’s airports. This in addition to adhering to strict health guidelines followed in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia to prevent the emergence of Covid-19.


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