7 Apr 2010

Consumers International says Fiji on right track with voucher system

2:13 pm on 7 April 2010

The director of Consumers International for Asia Pacific says Fiji is on the right track with its price control and giving out food vouchers to the poor, but closer monitoring is also needed.

Indrani Thuraisingham says mechanisms are needed to ensure the poor can buy basic goods and a price control makes sure that essential goods aren't overpriced.

She says given close to 35 percent of the population in Fiji lives in poverty, there needs to be adequate monitoring of any voucher system to prevent abuse.

"Although the food vouchers are being given, but sometimes when they go to these supermarkets to actually access some of the items listed in the food vouchers, they are being charged again prices even though there's a sale, the price they are being charged is of the original price, even though there's a sale. So some things need to be ironed out, but I would say generally they are on the right track."

Indrani Thuraisingham of Consumers International's Asia Pacific office.