Cap on chicken price will prevent further uncertainties, say traders

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Chicken traders and restaurant operators are relieved after the Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs Ministry announced that the ceiling price of standard chicken will remain at RM9.40 per kilogramme.

Chicken traders said this would prevent further uncertainties, which greatly affected their businesses last month.

Wan Alias Wan Ibrahim, a wet market chicken seller from Kajang, said he was happy about the government’s decision to maintain the ceiling price.

He said last month was a difficult time for businesses amid the chicken supply shortage.

“But now the situation has slightly improved, and we have started to recover slowly and can sell chicken at the government-approved price.

“However, this is still temporary. The subsidies and prices may vary a few months down the road and we generally don’t want that,” he told the New Straits Times.

Wan Alias, 39, said traders needed a permanent solution, so they did not have to keep guessing what would happen next.

“I hope the ministry can come up with a better and longer-lasting solution for chicken prices soon.”

Another chicken seller, C.H. Chan, said he was grateful the government did not go ahead with the plan to stop subsidies for chicken, otherwise the price could hit RM12 per kg or higher.

The 53-year-old trader said RM9.40 per kg ceiling price was still affordable as one whole chicken could cost between RM13 and RM18.

However, he does not see the decision to maintain the ceiling price for standard chicken impacting his business.

“I don’t expect many changes, but I appreciate the fact that there is no further hike in the standard chicken price. I believe the sales of standard chicken will more or less be the same until further announcements are made,” he said at a market in Cheras today.

Malaysian Muslim Restaurant Operators Association (Presma) president Datuk Jawahar Ali Taib Khan believes the decision on the ceiling price is beneficial to chicken sellers nationwide.

“We appreciate the government’s decision very much.

“If we want to compare the prices of chicken in Singapore and Thailand, the price of chicken in Malaysia remains the most reasonable,” he said.

The Ali Maju restaurant group executive chairman said the selling price of chicken dishes would remain the same.

He also said chicken feed was costly since it was imported.

“It is preferable if Malaysia has its own facility that produces chicken feed.”

On Sunday, Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs Minister Datuk Seri Alexander Nanta Linggi said the cabinet had decided to continue providing subsidies and also to not float chicken prices.

Source : New Straits Times