Suppliers should cut prices first, say Malaysian eateries

Suppliers should cut prices first, say Malaysian eateries
Food and fuel: Eateries are being asked to reduce their prices given the drop in fuel costs.

PETALING JAYA - Most restaurant operators are still blaming wholesa­lers and suppliers for not being able to bring down food prices.

They claimed that the cost of fresh meat and other items were still being supplied based on old prices when the fuel costs were higher.

Malaysian Muslim Restaurant Owners Association president Noo­rul Hassan Saul Hameed said his members were willing to cut prices if manufacturers and suppliers did likewise.

"Until then, we cannot do so because the prices of raw mate­rials used in our outlets still cost the same," he said.

"Many suppliers, like vegetable farmers, give the excuse that they are affected by uncertain weather and floods so the prices will remain high for now," he said.

Federal Territory Bumiputra Traders president Datuk Rosli Sulai­man said it was too early to tell whether local eateries would lower the prices of food.

"They are supposed to do so as fuel prices have come down, but they are not doing so because the prices are kept on a float system and are not permanent," he said.

Malaysia Singapore Coffee Shop Proprietors' General Association president Ho Su Meng said its members were in no position to reduce prices if the transport charges, electricity tariffs, and water rates remained the same.

"We must look at the whole scenario.

"If the cost of transport charges, electricity and water remain high, we will have to pay for all the costs.

"How do we move about from there?" he asked.

Cameron Highlands Vegetable Growers Association secretary Chay Ee Mong said the prices of vegetables have continued to drop since two weeks ago because of the increase in supply and fierce competition from imported greens for the Chinese New Year season.

"The price of cabbage was RM2 (S$0.75) two weeks ago, but now it has gone down to RM1 or RM1.20.

"The price of mustard leaves (choy sum) has also dropped from between RM2 and RM3 to the current RM1.

"We do not know why it is sold quite high in the market and this should be answered by the retailers," said Chay.

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