Muscat: The recent decision to restrict the powers of the Public Authority for Consumer Protection (PACP) to control the prices of only 23 products was taken as per the principles of free market economy and Oman's commitment to the World Trade Organisation (WTO).
The WTO insists on letting the market determine the prices of goods on supply and demand principle, said Dr Ali bin Masoud Al Sunaidy, Minister of Commerce and Industry, at a meeting held with the businessmen, importers of consumer goods, distributors and wholesalers on Tuesday.
Also present at the meeting was Said bin Saleh Al Kiyoumi, chairman of the Oman Chamber of Commerce and Industry (OCCI).
Sunaidy said the move could result in extensive changes in the market, leading to free trade and competition. This will only increase the variety of goods available in the market.
"It will also allow an increase in trade agents," he added.
Informing that there will be certain changes in Article (5), (7) and (10) of the Commercial Agencies Law, he said, "Through these changes, new players will be allowed to compete with established traders."
Meanwhile, the chairman of the OCCI lauded the efforts of the government authorities in creating an environment for competition and also for addressing the imbalances in the market.
He said that the amendments to the Commercial Agencies Law would be issued soon.
Al Kiyoumi pointed out that it was not acceptable for any company to raise prices without giving a reasonable justification.