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Saudi government pledges to punish Ramadan price hikers

The Saudi government has said it would punish traders who increase prices of commodities including food from now through Ramadan, Arab News has reported. The warning follows a reported steady rise in prices and significant differences in the prices of certain commodities among shopping centres, a source at the ministry of commerce told the daily. "We attribute price increases and price differences to the absence of close monitoring of the markets and insufficient penalties imposed on violating traders," the source said. All departments concerned have been asked to monitor increases and report violators immediately, he said.