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24 April 2024

MoE finalises draft laws on competition, investment

Dr Hashim Al Nuaimi (SUPPLIED)

By Abdel Hai Mohamed

The Ministry of Economy has finalised two draft laws on competition and investment, which are expected to help curb unjustifiable price hikes and stop unfair competition, according to a top official of the ministry.

Mohammed Al Shehi, Director General of the MoE, said the ministry expects the two laws, which have been forwarded to the authorities concerned for approval, will enable it to protect consumers, monitor prices, achieve fair competition and fight monopoly.

Al Shehi, who was speaking during the start of the Fourth Gulf Consumer Protection Day, also said the ministry will work to raise awareness about commodities and services and among consumers as well as their rights.

The ministry yesterday organised a press conference at the Hilton Abu Dhabi to announce the expected discounts at sale outlets during the Gulf Consumer Protection Day activities, which will continue until the end of March.

The press conference was attended by Dr Hashim Al Nuaimi, Director of the Consumer Protection Department, who told Emirates Business that a large number of sales outlets have handed lists of hundreds of commodities to the ministry that will be sold at discounted prices. Several will be sold at their cost prices with no profit, he said.

The items include rice, flour, tea and sugar but not dairy products, according to Al Nuaimi. "I believe the competition law will curb price rises as well as monopoly. We are waiting to issue the law as soon as possible."

Al Nuaimi said the ministry is proceeding with its campaign to reduce prices, and "we hope the number of discounted commodities will grow in April".

Meanwhile, representative of Union Co-operative, Rashid Omran Al Shamsi, said that a majority of consumers do not feel prices have fallen. Prices have fallen by only ten per cent in the country, he said, although prices are going down at a faster pace worldwide.