PHILIPSBURG, St. Maarten - Minister of Economic Affairs Mellissa Arrindell-Doncher on Thursday said inspectors of the Economic Control Department has issued stern warnings to businesses caught price gouging in the aftermath of hurricanes Irma and Maria.
The Minister also disclosed that business was caught selling items with no prices on the goods and some businesses were refusing to provide receipts. The law dictates that if these practices are found, the business in question would get a stern warning and has to correct the violations on the spot. Repeat offenders will be heavily fined.
Supermarkets, tire repair shops, hardware stores and general appliances and wares stores are all being controlled by the inspectors. The Minister thanked the public for being vigilant and reporting price gouging when they encounter it.
“Many people used social media and the official government link to report price gouging. We appreciate these community efforts to promote fairness and stop illegal pricing of items in the country. Please remain vigilant and keep reporting,” the Minister said.
The Minister also used the opportunity to praise the Economic Controllers for being dedicated to their task even while some have suffered personal damage after hurricane Irma.