Speculation over govt pay rise increases commodity prices
03 March 2015 — Prices of consumer goods are going up in Chin State as the government reportedly plans to make a pay rise next month, the end of the financial year.
The cost of a bag of rice (about 50 kg) has jumped from 35,000 to 40,000 kyats while that of other basic needs such as oil and groceries increases by smaller amounts.
Pi Bor, a grocery shop-owner in Hakha, said: “Some of our goods come from Kalay of Sagaing Region and others from Gangaw and Mandalay. Their prices are increasing. So we have to do the same.”
Mai Sui, a Hakha pharmacy shop-owner, also said that the costs of medicines in general had already gone up for months, adding: “Around this time each year, prices goes up. It really affects our business and family’s expenses.”
It is speculated that the government will raise salaries up to 50 percent in April.
“We hear the news but it is not confirmed. The authorities have not informed us of the pay rise. We will have to check our pay next month. But we know the market prices are on the increase,” said Ms Par, a State government employee in Hakha.
A butcher shop told the Hakha Post that meat prices were likely to increase from 6,000 to 7,000 kyats per viss (about 1.5 kg) in the near future.
In April last year, prices had increased more than 25 percent following the government’s pay rise plan.#