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Tuesday, September 21, 2021

Qatar stores told to offer discounts on 400 items during Ramadan

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Photo for illustrative purposes only.
Photo for illustrative purposes only.

The Ramadan season in Qatar has officially kicked off a few weeks early this year, after the Minister of Economy and Trade announced an upcoming annual price freeze on some 400 food and everyday items in grocery stores.

The set prices take effect June 6 and will be in place until the end of Ramadan, which is estimated to be around July 16.

During this time, all shops in Qatar will be required by law to sell the listed goods at the prices set by the government, which is about 10 percent lower than usual.

The Minister of Economy and Commerce Sheikh Ahmed bin Jassim bin Mohamed Al-Thani issued Ministerial Decision No. 216 of 2015 outlining the items and their maximum costs as an effort to “ease the burden of extra costs on consumers,” QNA reports.

This follows the approval given by the state Cabinet earlier this month of the minister’s decision to fix the prices.

On the list

Items on the list include flour; cooking oils; dairy such as fresh and condensed milk, laban, yogurt and cheese; dates; processed fruit drinks and Vimto; staples like pasta and rice; fresh and frozen chicken and other meat; fruit and vegetables, tea, coffee and other canned foods; and items such as trash bags, hand soap and paper tissues.

Photo for illustrative purposes only.
Photo for illustrative purposes only.

This is the fifth year the government has fixed the price of everyday goods for shoppers in Qatar during Ramadan, when Muslim families buy and cook large meals to enjoy after breaking their fast and to share with friends, neighbors and those less fortunate.

This year’s list of goods is similar to last year. In 2013, the prices of 320 items of food and household essentials were fixed.

The minister has urged residents to report any violations and warned stores that inspectors would monitor prices and the stock of items.

Preparations underway

Ramadan is currently expected to start around June 18, according to predictions from the Sharjah planetarium, the National reports.

Stores and malls around town are already gearing up for the holy month. Decorations have been going up around town and some supermarkets have launched special promotions on favorite seasonal products.

For example, Al Meera, which has 35 branches around the country, said it would sell 1,000 items at cost-price during the month.

Ahead of Ramadan each year, health professionals issue warnings about not over-indulging in rich and oily foods, particularly when breaking the fast. In recent years, Hamad Hospital has seen a spike in patients complaining of stomach and digestive issues at the time.

Are you getting ready for Ramadan? Thoughts?

16 COMMENTS

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Ms. Hala
6 years ago

This is good news for a lot of people whom may be financially struggling this summer. With that in mind, I will never understand how people suffer from “over eating” during Ramadan. Defeats the entire purpose on many levels… Sigh.

Critic
Critic
6 years ago

Will someone help me understand when/how did Qatar’s love affair with Vimto start? Every Ramadan you see the supermarkets pile it sky high.. and it sells like crazy ?!

Heisenberg
Heisenberg
6 years ago
Reply to  Critic

This isn’t only in Qatar, most Arab countries has the same love affair with Vimto and it started long time ago. I think it was one of the few options available in stores back then.

Saleem
Saleem
6 years ago
Reply to  Heisenberg

Blue Label was widely available back then, it was sold in the old Souqs.

A_qtr
A_qtr
6 years ago
Reply to  Critic

A hang over from the British occupation days … There’s a long history behind it and a fascinating story to be honest .. I’d love to write a mini essay on Vimeo Ramadan and British colonization for dohanews… But i won’t…

R.D.H
R.D.H
6 years ago
Reply to  A_qtr

You should!

Andrew
Andrew
6 years ago
Reply to  A_qtr

You’ve piqued my interest! At least give us a few of the key points?

Saleem
Saleem
6 years ago
Reply to  A_qtr

Share it

Hamad
Hamad
6 years ago
Reply to  Critic

I think that Vimto was one of the first beverages to arrive in the gulf region. Even before the oil was discovered. My grandfather used to drink Vimto in the 30s!. It has always been a favourite during iftar time because it very sweet ( much sweeter than the one sold in the UK) so it gives you energy after fasting all day.

Qunnaby
Qunnaby
6 years ago
Reply to  Critic

Its not just Qatar. As a matter of fact its the whole region. Vimto TV commercials have already started showing on Middle Eastern Channels.

Doodz
Doodz
6 years ago

Good news!

MIMH
MIMH
6 years ago

So this means for the rest of the year the shops are ripping us off?

Tamader
Tamader
6 years ago
Reply to  MIMH

They take advantage of Ramadan to raise prices because they know people need certain products especially during this time of year.

MIMH
MIMH
6 years ago

I hope the authorities also make hotels reduce their booze prices for Christmas and new year so the ordinary person celebrating doesn’t get ripped off

Simon
Simon
6 years ago
Reply to  MIMH

Great stuff, thank you! Now I can go to my pit chuckling!

DB
DB
6 years ago

Also don’t put off your QDC run too long! That place is a madhouse the week or so before Ramadan.

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