July 13, 2024

Myanmar detains 11 accused of rice price gouging

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Myanmar’s military authorities have arrested 11 people, including a Japanese executive, for selling rice at prices higher than prescribed levels.

Officials said on Monday that the detainees include rice traders, millers and retailers. The charges relate to the sale of rice at prices up to 70 percent higher than what is deemed acceptable by the authorities as they struggle with deep economic instability amid the ongoing conflict in the country.

Among the detainees was a Japanese executive, whose arrest has caused friction with Tokyo. A director at supermarket operator Aeon Orange, Hiroshi Kasamatsu was detained following an investigation into rice mills and supermarkets, the authorities’ information team said late on Sunday.

It said that Kasamatsu and three Myanmar nationals were suspected of price gouging “with the aim to make economic chaos”.

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