Basic foodstuffs have become a luxury for many people in Bosnia and Herzegovina, as prices are inexplicably rising continuously while wages and pensions remain the same.
Germans and Austrians will spend about 15 Bosnian Marks (BAM) to purchase flour, butter, oil, milk, chocolate and half a kilogram of coffee. These same items, in the same quantity, cost about 28 BAM in Bosnia and Herzegovina.
Authorities have still not adopted decisions to abolish excise taxes and VAT on basic foodstuffs, and no action is being taken to tackle prices sellers who raise prices on a daily basis and arbitrarily.
“Croatia has become cheaper than Bosnia and Herzegovina in some respects, which is really absurd because Croatia has always had higher VAT and in general the prices were much, much higher than in Bosnia and Herzegovina. This is proof that many prices in Bosnia and Herzegovina have been inflated on a speculative level,” the President of the Consumer Protection agency in Sarajevo Canton (KS) Edin Pasic, told N1.
N1 checked the prices of some of the goods and compared them.
A standard packet of butter in Austria costs a little more than 4 BAM, while in BiH it costs nearly 7 BAM. In Germany, about 2 BAM will be spent to buy the same quantity of cooking oil which would cost almost 4 and a half BAM in BiH.
Institutions must limit the margin and unfounded and daily price increases on certain products. Inspections and Entity Ministries of Trade.
Economist Igor Gavran told N1 that it is the job of inspection institutions and the trade ministries in BiH’s two semi-autonomous entities to address the issue.
“They should be able to literally decide on the margin – oil can cost this much, and the price will be this much. This is confidential information, but the institutions have the right to access it,” he said.