Price of pork unreasonable

The Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development recently had a meeting with the representatives of the Ministry of Industry and Trade (MoIT) and the General Statistics Office of Vietnam on controlling the price of pork and ensuring the supply of this product.
At the meeting, they proposed to list pork in the price stabilization program as a basis for implementing declaration and controlling price-forming factors.

Mr. Hoang Anh Tuan, Deputy Head of the Domestic Market Department under the MoIT, said that the recent inspection at some enterprises showed that the average cost price of pork was merely at VND45,000 per kilogram even during the peak of the African swine fever epidemic. Therefore, just by selling at VND72,000 per kilogram as committed with the Government, enterprises will earn a profit of VND2 million per 100-kilogram pig; if enterprises sell pigs at VND72,000-VND74,000 per kilogram, they will gain a profit of VND2.5-VND3 million per pig. Therefore, he proposed to put the pork into the category of price stabilized products following the Law on Price, thereby basing on the actual situation and expenses to set the price.

According to Ms. Do Thi Ngoc, Head of the Price Statistics Department, the price of pork is currently at extremely high levels and affecting greatly to the consumer price index (CPI). From July last year to January this year, the price of pork had continuously escalated with the highest time starting from October, November, and December last year, causing the CPI to rise to a high level. Particularly, the CPI in December last year rose by 1.4 percent and the CPI in January this year went up 1.23 percent while the CPI of the whole year increased merely 4 percent.

She said that it is unreasonable when the cost price is at low levels but through intermediaries, pork is sold to consumers at extremely high prices. The average price of pigs is merely at VND80,000 per kilogram, but at the markets, the price of pork is 1.7 times higher. According to the calculation of the Ministry of Finance, if the price of pork declined 10 percent in February, it would help the average CPI in the first two months of this year to merely climb by 5.67 percent compared to the same period last year and the average CPI of the year to be at 4.22 percent.

To achieve this target, Ms. Ngoc asked relevant ministries and departments to carry out well measures to manage the supply and demand to reduce the price of pigs to VND60,000-VND65,000 per kilogram and sell pork at the stabilized prices in the next months or continue to lower the price of pigs to VND45,000-VND50,000 per kilogram. It is necessary to implement promptly and drastically the measures instructed by the Government to manage the supply and demand, and cut the price of pork right in February and March.

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