Consumer associations agreed to highlight the importance of setting up the Observatory of Prices and Availability of Inputs, Goods and Services, because it will allow analyzing the value chain of each of the products involved in price formation.
Last Tuesday the Secretary of Commerce, headed by Matías Tombolini, presented this body to associations, ministries and unions, whose objective is to “monitor, survey and systematize the prices and availability of inputs, goods and services that are produced, marketed and provided in the territory of the Nation”.
“We very much agree that the Observatory works because its mission is to generate reports on the economic issue of companies and whether or not there is distortion in prices,” said the president of the Users and Consumers Defense Association (Deuco), Pedro Alberto Bussetti, in dialogue with Télam.
Regarding the formation of prices, he argued that the “problem is structural” and it was generated in the “90s, when the distribution chain was modified”, and that until that decade “the factories, Terrabusi, Bagley, Molino and Federal reached the trade directly”.
“That process was interrupted with the advent of large supermarket chainswhich absorbed the aforementioned companies, becoming oligopolies,” he explained.
The Observatory of Prices and Availability of Inputs, Goods and Services began to function, a tool that will allow the cost structures of the different value chains to be verified in price formation. https://t.co/iLp2Y157Xq
– Secretary of Commerce (@ComercioArg) November 23, 2022
The products that increased the most in recent months were “24 of 51 that INDEC measures, including sugar, which increased 204% in nine months and oil with 140%, much more than inflation,” he claimed.
The price analysis process ranges from the product leaving the factory -including packaging- until it reaches the gondolathen produces a report that is delivered to the Secretary of Commerce, “who has to take the measure based on the reality that the Observatory is showing him,” said the president of Deuco.
The request for information on costs and quantities to the producing and marketing companies by the Observatory It will be through the Ministry of Commerce.
In the same sense, the president of the Association of Consumers and Users of Argentina (Acuda), Ricardo Julio Espinosa, maintained that from his space “they asked for the Observatory” because there is “a lot of dispersion of prices”and that in “the last three months the increases were very pronounced”.
“The truth is that we always find some excuses or arguments like the dollar, the war in Ukraine or the drought, which is real, but the problem is with consumers who have to go every day to buy products”Ricardo Julio Espinosa
“The truth is that we always find some excuses or arguments like the dollar, the war in Ukraine or the drought, which is real, but the problem is with consumers who have to go every day to buy products”, added.
Law 26,992 was enacted in September 2014 and establishes that the Observatory of Prices and Availability of Inputs, Goods and Services must be made up of representatives of different ministries, the Executive Branch, agrarian affairs and three consumer associations.
For his part, the president of the Association for the Defense of User and Consumer Rights (Adduc), Osvaldo Héctor Bassano, stressed that this Observatory It is a way of saying to manufacturers and marketers “well, gentlemen, collaborate, otherwise you will be penalized!”.
WE LAUNCH THE PRICE OBSERVATORY
Today, together with representatives of national organizations, companies, unions, universities and consumer associations, we held the first meeting of the Observatory of Prices and Availability of Inputs, Goods and Services. pic.twitter.com/bJMf0ixPZE
— Matias Tombolini (@matiastombolini) November 23, 2022
The law that created the Observatory provides sanctions through fines for those who commit violations.
The Consumer Price Index marked a monthly increase of 6.3% in October and a variation of 88% compared to the same month of 2021, increasing food and beverages by 6.2% monthly highlighting the rise in prices of vegetables, tubers and legumes; and fruits, as reported by INDEC.
Bassano, regarding inflation, said that “is generated by different monopolies that have been concentrating And this was accentuated from 2015 to 2019, when it finished concentrating on large monopolies.”
In addition, the president of Adduc said that the Observatory is not only going to study underlying costs, but also if the companies incur in the practice of collecting stock of products, which is used “speculatively to increase prices”.
“The Observatory is not going to solve inflation problems, but it is going to moderate it”Osvaldo Hector Bassano
“The Observatory is not going to solve inflation problems, but it will moderate it”said.
Regarding productive value chains, he argued that are made up of “stocks, logistics, raw materials, etc.”, and that it is not only “labour cost” that would ultimately be the “last problem in the value chain” in price formation.
In the last meeting, three consumer associations were elected, as established by the law of the Observatory in representation of the entities, and they are Deuco, Acuda and Aduuc.