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Milk-product prices may be added to control list

Update: September, 25/2013 - 08:35

T.he Pricing Management Department of the Ministry of Finance said the ministry has investigated the price of products containing milk because the product was not under its control.— Photo phunuvietnam

HA NOI (VNS) — In a report to the Prime Minister, the Ministry of Finance has suggested that the Ministry of Health should ask the Government to add milk products to a list of certified (price controlled) products for children under six years old.

According to the report, the finance ministry has worked with the ministries of Health and Industry and Trade on managing the price of milk. The Ministry of Finance asked the Ministry of Health, as the State office responsible for managing milk quality and standards as well as milk products, to review the prices for these products.

The finance ministry said 17 out of the total of 18 companies producing, distributing and trading milk for children under six years old have already submitted prices for their products to the Price Management Department.

Meanwhile, according to the Ministry of Health's national technical standards for milk and nutritional products, currently there are no products described as milk-powder products for children under six on the market. The products are instead described as "additional" or "nutritional" foods and their prices have been not stabilised under the existing regulations.

The Ministry of Health also sent a report to the Prime Minister on the high prices of milk products.

The ministry said there were many kinds of nutritional products containing milk for children under six. In Viet Nam, the ministry has classified these products, according to international standards, into four groups, include milk powder, nutritional products for children up to one year, nutritional products considered especially healthy for the same age bracket - and nutritional products for children aged from six months to three years.

According to existing regulations, the price of nutritional products is not controlled by any State offices, so the existing classification of milk products and products containing milk by the Ministry of Health will not create an opportunity for milk producers and traders to frequently increase prices for their products containing milk.

The reports from the ministries of Health and Finance were issued after the Prime Minister last week asked the two ministries to report on high milk prices on the local market.

Because the price of milk is not controlled by the Government, dairy companies can increase prices at any time.

Some milk products were listed at US$4-5 (VND80,000-100,000) per unit on customs declaration forms, but were later retailed for VND400,000-900,000, ($18.92-42.57) according to the General Customs Office.

The Pricing Management Department of the Ministry of Finance said the ministry has investigated the price of products containing milk because the product was not under its control. — VNS

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