Malaysia is considering limiting or stopping its export of eggs to ensure sufficient supply for its domestic market says Malaysian Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs Minister Saifuddin Nasution Ismail.
On Monday while speaking at a press conference after the Ministry of Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs’ monthly meeting, Mr Saifuddin said that the ministry is also looking into possible cartel activities that are driving up local egg prices these past several months.
Mr Saifuddin explained that the ministry has been receiving multiple complains from consumers around the country, including Penang, Sarawak and Putrajaya, that egg prices have been on the rise, especially in mid-November.
“In the first week of November, the price of grade A eggs in Putrajaya increased from RM3.98 (10 eggs) to RM5.11. In the third week, it went down to RM4.04. After that it has remained at around RM4,” said the minister.
In response, Mr Saifuddin added that his ministry has conducted checks at all stages of egg production in the country from production to distribution and wholesaler throughout the country since 7th December to source out the main cause of the problem.
He added that when queried, producers and wholesalers cited weather conditions, the value of the ringgit, high cost of chicken feed, and the increasing utility cost of chicken rearers as some of the reasons for the price hike.
If illegal actions were taken to purposefully drive up the cost of eggs such as via price fixing, division of territories and/or joint efforts by producers and wholesalers to limit production, action could be taken against the culprits under the Competition Act for cartel activities.
“If the traders are purposely increasing the price of eggs in order to make exorbitant profits, the ministry will not hesitate to take action under the Price Control and Anti-Profiteering Act 2011,” said Mr Saifuddin.
So what does this mean for Singapore? Well, with Malaysia being one of Singapore’s egg suppliers, there’s a possibility that egg prices will see a hike in Singapore as well.