BUJUMBURA August 4th (ABP) – Consumers of basic food products are asking the government to set prices for those products. These are the words of consumers that a check by ABP met in the central market commonly known as COTEBU during a visit she made on Tuesday, August 3, 2021.
Those consumers met on the site say that the pricing of certain basic foodstuffs is necessary to avoid possible speculation on the part of certain traders. They explain that they are asking for market prices to be set after hearing that the government of Burundi, through the Ministry of the Environment, Agriculture and Livestock, has set the selling prices for producers. They also add that when we compare the selling price set for producers and the selling price in the market, there is a significant difference proving that the prices for consumers are high.
As an illustration, a kilo of red onions can be bought at 2,200 BIF in the market while the government had set the price per kilo for producers at 1,200 BIF. Our sources also reported the case of potatoes which are currently being bought at 1200 BIF per kilo while the government has set the price of 700 BIF at the production. The difference proves that traders sell for a high price.
Traders contacted say that pricing is one thing, but the reality on the field is another. “Producer prices have been heard on the radio,” they say, deploring that on the field, fixed prices do not practically exist.
Instead of abandoning the profession which supports families, those traders prefer to buy the products at the price found on the field and sell them as they bought, taking into account travel expenses, including taxes and duties, they explained.
The traders contacted also reported that the majority of consumers complain about that setting of producer prices. They ask that the ministry responsible for agriculture review the prices of certain items to avoid quarrels between traders and consumers.