NEWS

‘Businesses And Bakeries Are Closing In Labasa’

"Small shops that used to sell tin tuna were only able to make a profit of five cents from one tin." Satish Kumar (Labasa Chamber of Commerce and Industries president)
30 Jun 2022 16:11
‘Businesses And Bakeries Are Closing In Labasa’
Labasa Town

Many small businesses and bakeries have closed in Labasa because of the increase in wholesale, markup prices and added expenses.

This was highlighted by Labasa Chamber of Commerce and Industries President Satish Kumar during a meeting with the Minister for Commerce, Trade and Tourism Faiyaz Koya yesterday.

Mr Kumar explained that small shops that used to sell tin tuna were only able to make a profit of five cents from one tin.

 

“I operate a bakery business and we are not making profit as what we are supposed to,” Mr Kumar said.

“Some customers when they come to buy a long loaf they want us to pack it in a plastic bag and then in a carton and we accommodate their needs.”

He said business in North was operating differently from Viti Levu where people eat more long loaf.

 

“Other bakeries are able to survive by making bakery products such as cream loaf, onion bun but for Labasa the demand for long loaf is more,” he said.

“Hence, we are requesting for a price increase in long loaf bread.”

Last month, the Fijian Competition and Consumer Commission (FCCC) had increased the price of long loaf from 71 cents to 94 cents.

 

Mr Kumar said a submission was made to FCCC and the response they got was: ‘it was only the Labasa people complaining.’

Naodamu Supermarket owner Saten Prasad who also operates a bakery said he stopped doing wholesale of long loaf loaf bread because the cost of running business was high.

“We need to pay our workers, and their wage rate has increased and within a few days the prices of flour are going to increase,” Mr Prasad said.

 

“The markup price should be different for North and Viti Levu.”

Mr Koya said he would liaise with FCCC on the issue.

He added that he wanted to see more businesses opening up and existing businesses thriving and hence he would look into this.

 

Feedback: shratikan@fijisun.com.fj



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