Ministerial Regulation to prevent price gouging during a hurricane threat

The Minister of Tourism & Economic Affairs, Traffic and Transportation (TEATT) Hon. Romeo Pantophlet is currently preparing a ministerial regulation that would prevent price gouging during a hurricane threat for the 2012 Atlantic Hurricane Season.

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The ministerial regulation would take effect two days prior to a hurricane strike and would remain in effect two days after a hurricane has passed.  The latter is dependent on the extent of damage sustained by the country and the length of time for national clean-up.
It has become common practice in different parts of the world when a natural disaster such as a hurricane strikes, a number of retailers will try to take advantage of the victims.
Price gouging is when a retailer unnecessarily and callously increases their prices during a time of great panic or in an emergency situation. 
In order to avoid the above situation, the Office of Disaster Management has advised residents prior to the start of the hurricane season to prepare a disaster kit which should include non-perishable canned foods, water, batteries etc.
The Inspection Department TEATT has compiled a list of food items, hardware/building materials, and sanitary products with maximum prices.
It would be forbidden for merchants to sell any of the listed items above the maximum prices stipulated.  The community will be informed when the regulation is no longer in effect.
Food items and sanitary products with a maximum price are: corned beef, sardines, soup, tuna in the can, vienna sausages, bottled water, toothpaste, mouth wash, dishwashing liquid, bath soaps, toilet paper, soap powder, disinfectant, batteries, glass candles, and hurricane lamps.
Government has also set maximum prices for building materials that are used for securing one’s home or business during the last hours pending a hurricane strike.
The maximum prices are for lumber, ply form, nails (galvanize, steel, concrete, zinc nails), paint, hammers, felt paper, flush doors, roof zinc, blocks, cement, P.V.C. fittings, and C.P.V.C.
Prior to a hurricane strike within 48 hours, controllers will carry out spot checks to see whether businesses are selling items at regular prices.  Those caught price gouging will be prosecuted.
Products that fall under the maximum price will be published in the Government Information Page (GIP) in both daily newspapers within short.  Consumers are advised to save the page in the event they need to check it when the ministerial regulation goes into effect.
The maximum price list will also be available on the Government website in a PDF file format allowing consumers to also download the lists of food items, sanitary products and building materials.
Maximum prices have been established in accordance with article 2 sub 1a of the Price Ordinance 1961.
As a consumer, if you believe that a merchant has cheated or scammed you by engaging in price gouging, then you can call the Inspection Department at Tel. 543-7820 to file a complaint.