The food chain sector has been given a firm caution by the Federal Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (FCCPC) to put an end to any activities that manipulatively raise food prices. Adamu Abdullahi, the Acting CEO said that the commission is closely monitoring the sector and will not hesitate to pursue legal measures against any individuals found guilty. He expressed his concern over alarming activities discovered by the FCCPC’s monitoring efforts in the food chain sector. The participants faced allegations of conspiring to manipulate prices, exploiting the worries and susceptibility of consumers.
Reports suggest that businesses deliberately limit the availability of food in order to exert more control over pricing. The commission has uncovered additional tactics employed to manipulate the market and take advantage of consumers. Emphasising consumer protection and competition concerns, the commission affirms its commitment to tackling essential issues in the sector. The commission’s monitoring endeavours point towards collusion and unethical measures within the industry, encompassing its distribution networks and even extending to the retail level.
Businesses are cautioned to stop price gouging or face legal penalties.
These practices involve conspiring, inflating prices, stockpiling, and employing other unfair tactics to limit food supply, ultimately leading to manipulated prices purposefully. Such actions not only breach legal regulations but also infringe on moral principles. Engaging in the reprehensible practice of exploiting consumers’ fears and weaknesses to raise prices and control competition artificially is both obnoxious and unlawful. Moreover, unfair tactics such as undue influence, imbalanced bargaining power, and manipulative behaviour in selling and distributing goods and services go against the regulations stated in Sections 17 and 124 of the FCCPA and will face legal repercussions.
Also, businesses involved in actions that contribute to price gouging within the food chain sector are sternly cautioned to immediately stop such practices or else encounter the rigorous consequences of legal enforcement. The commission strongly condemns any actions that jeopardise the credibility of the food industry, and the repercussions will be immediate and severe from a legal standpoint. Abdullahi emphasised that these actions breach ethical principles and infringe upon legal regulations, which focuses on unfair market tactics and the exploitation of dominant market positions.
Consumer protection and fair competition must be prioritised.
Enterprises involved in such activities will encounter the ensuing punishments. The FCCPC possesses the power to administer penalties for any breaches committed under the Commission Act. Furthermore, he highlighted the possibility of legal consequences, such as prosecution, for those who violate the regulations. The FCCPC emphasised its dedication to safeguarding consumers and promoting equitable competition within the food industry. He reiterated the commission’s zero-tolerance policy towards activities that undermine the sector’s integrity and strongly recommended that businesses adhere to the law.
On the other hand, Market manipulation refers to the deliberate deceit employed by those involved in the market as they try to distort or falsify the prices within it. This concept applies not only to the manipulation of stock markets but also to financial manipulation as a whole. Its purpose is to exploit advantageous shifts in the market in order to generate profits. The key components of market manipulation encompass activities undertaken directly within the market and those carried out externally to instigate market fluctuation.
Related article: Risks with unfair food prices in Nigeria
Governments can combat inflation by employing wage and price controls, but the outcome of these policies have historically been unfavourable. Consequently, governments have sought alternative methods to regulate the economy. One approach is implementing a contractionary monetary policy, which involves decreasing the money supply in a given economy. Another effective way to control inflationary pressures is by fostering an increase in labour and capital supply, productivity, and personal savings. The Nigerian government and its citizens often focus solely on graduate unemployment, disregarding the underlying causes and essentially addressing symptoms.