Beijing authorities warn against stockpiling, price hoarding for COVID-19 prevention products
Published: Dec 06, 2022 12:57 AM
Workers package masks in a factory in Jinhua, East China's Zhejiang Province on December 1, 2022. Photo: VCG

Workers package masks in a factory in Jinhua, East China's Zhejiang Province on December 1, 2022. Photo: VCG

The Beijing Municipal Market Supervision Bureau warned on Monday against stockpiling, spreading false news or monopoly pricing for coronavirus prevention products like masks or medicine, with sales of such products surging after many Chinese local governments optimized their COVID-19 prevention measures toward a more flexible, scientific approach.

According to a statement published on the WeChat account of the Beijing Municipal Market Supervision Bureau, market entities should accurately record and verify the production and operation costs for goods and services to make sure that the products and services provided to customers have a reasonable price.

"It is forbidden to hoard, fabricate news, spread information about price increases and drive up prices of vital commodities such as grain, oil, meat, eggs, vegetables and milk as well as anti-epidemic supplies such as masks, antiviral drugs, disinfection/sterilization supplies and related medical devices," said the statement.

Besides, information such as product name, price and other details should be indicated clearly for the goods sold, according to the statement.

Officials are moving to warn against price hoarding and other violations at a time when the sales volume of many anti-epidemic products are surging as local governments in China turn toward a more precise way of controlling the spread of the virus.

Several cities including Shenzhen and Beijing no longer require negative results for nucleic acid tests to take public transport. Shanghai has also eased requirements for negative nucleic acid tests.

Influenced by the adjustment in epidemic control measures, many people are rushing to buy anti-epidemic products in case they are infected with the virus.

According to reports, the sales volume of cold, fever, cough, antibacterial and anti-inflammatory drugs on domestic medical website JD Health has surged 18 times in the past seven days compared with October.

Searches for Lianhua Qingwen, a kind of Chinese herbal medicine which was recommended for the treatment of COVID-19 by Chinese medical authorities, surged 2,000 times compared with the corresponding period last year.

The turnover for antigen detection kits on JD Health also increased 344 percent from November 28 to December 4 compared with the previous week.

Global Times