Report: Mydin boss anticipates dry goods, clothing price hike up to 10pc; suggests consumers buy less or prudently

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The price of dry goods and clothing in Malaysia is expected to increase by up to 10 per cent this year. — Picture by Shafwan Zaidon— Picture by Yusof Mat Isa
The price of dry goods and clothing in Malaysia is expected to increase by up to 10 per cent this year. — Picture by Shafwan Zaidon— Picture by Yusof Mat Isa

KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 16 — The price of dry goods and clothing in Malaysia is expected to increase by up to 10 per cent this year due to higher costs faced by manufacturers, together with international trade issues, hypermarket and retail chain Mydin Mohamed Holdings Berhad’s managing director has said.

According to local daily Sinar Harian, Mydin managing director Datuk Ameer Ali Mydin expects the price of dry goods — such as biscuits, sardines and popular drink Milo — to increase by eight to 10 per cent this year.

“We were told by many manufacturers that products will increase due to certain reasons (such as) the prices of raw material and logistics costs having increased,” he was quoted as saying.

He also said clothing prices were expected to increase by 10 to 15 per cent with new incoming stock, and noted that the prices for school bags and school shoes have already increased.

Noting that Malaysia is involved in international trade, he also reportedly said that Malaysians should not blame the government as this had nothing to do with the government, and that what is important is that the government helps.

Sinar Harian also reported Ameer Ali as giving tips for consumers, such as having the choice to buy cheaper products such as purchasing unbranded, cheaper clothing compared to previously buying a more expensive product.

“We have to be wise, smart to find products that we can afford. Because you have no choice. The product (price) will increase, your salary does not increase. Even if your salary increases, it is 3 to 5 per cent, but the product (price) increases by 10 per cent,” he said.

He also suggested that the public cut down on shopping such as by buying one item of clothing instead of two previously, and to also work hard to earn more.

Sinar Harian also quoted consumer finance expert Prof Mohamad Fazli Sabri as saying that rising goods costs of around 10 to 30 per cent would affect household spending, with a family that usually spends around RM2,000 a month expected to now spend an additional RM600 monthly — or an additional 30 per cent more.

Among other things, Mohamad Fazli suggested that households change their lifestyle and cut down on non-essential spending to cope with the price hikes, and suggested exploring the gig economy or digital economy as a way to supplement income when purse strings remain tight even after prudent spending.

He was also reported as expressing hope that the government would be firmer in enforcing monitoring towards price hikes and to help the public who are affected by the rise in living costs.

Sinar Harian also cited several members of the public who shared their experiences such as working two jobs or housewives selling food or prioritising only what is necessary when making purchases.

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