Monrovia — The Ministry of Commerce of Liberia has fined Fuani Brothers US$ 25,000.00 for unilaterally hiking the price of eggs on the Liberian market.
"This act by the Fuani Brothers is a violation of the Competition Act; the government will not allow business people to exploit the Liberian people," Minister of Commerce Prof. Wilson Tarpeh said.
Eggs have been in short supply on the local market in recent time.
With two weeks in office, the new team at the Ministry of Commerce is preparing to carryout robust inspection to regulate and bring calm to the market.
The Minister of Commerce said, the fine imposed on Fuani Brothers should serve as a warning to other businesses.
"We will not encourage any business to bring unnecessary hardship to our people. The US$25,000 impose on Fuani Brothers should be paid within 72 hours and it will be paid to the government revenue," Min. Tarpeh said.
Minister Tarpeh said while the government of President Weah stands ready and willing to encourage private investment, it will not tolerate unlawful business acts.
"We will not tolerate businesses that conduct in unlawful and inappropriate act that will undermine the commerce and trade of this country and bring unnecessary hardship to our people," he said.
Tarpeh Continued:" President Weah said that time has come for Liberians to stop being spectators in their economy, consistent with that this team has now added a motto to this Ministry to rebrand it and that is 'Liberia first, Liberian first'. "
"This drives our interaction with the business people; this team at the Ministry will ensure that Liberian businesses are at the core of economy of this country."
"Things that are manufactured locally will be given priority. The increasing costs are a combination of several factors from different institutions like BIVAC, APM Terminal, LRA, we will look into the elements of cost," Minister Commerce said.
Minister Tarpeh said that the Inspector General has dispatched inspectors on the field to ensure that President Weah's mandate on the reduction of rice is implemented.
"We have our inspectors, they are on the field, we will insist that the President's mandate is implemented, we had a discussion with them, the ceiling of rice is now 13USD," Tarpeh said.
Minister Tarpeh promised that his Ministry will ensure that junk products do not enter the Liberian commerce.
"We will ensure standard products on the Liberian market; what will be circulating will have to go through the National Standard Lab," the Commerce Minister said.
Minister Tarpeh said, the Ministry will insist that the decision in the reduction of the price of rice is implemented.
Deputy Minister for Small Business Administration Madam Jemama Wolokollie encouraged Liberian businesses to take advantage of the open market created by the Ministry of Commerce.
"We have other people that have taken over the economy and Liberians are going down, poverty, we have to erase as the President said," she said.
SBA Minister frowned on the fact that only five persons are importing rice for four million people in Liberia.
"We are here to encourage Liberians, we are going to open the market, and we are going to open the market to Liberians."
"It is now time for Liberians to wake up from their sleep, I don't think you can have only five people in this country bringing rice, for me its bother me," Madam Wolokollie said.
The Deputy Commerce Minister said Liberians are encouraged to get in the cement and rice business.
"President Weah sent us here for a purpose; I'm here to ensure that the people's mandate given the President is implemented."
"Liberians can bring in rice, cement, flours," Madam Wolokollie said.