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The Covid-19 emergency: constraints on trading and publishing raise price-gouging and censorship issues

31/03/2020

These reviews and policy changes are critical.
I am very concerned over some of the behaviour we are seeing.
I suspect many smaller businesses will never return.

Point of Order

Supermarkets and some publishers are favoured by the government’s imposition of severe restrictions on what we can do and from whom we can buy during the Covid-19 lock-down.

But one consumer watchdog is challenging the legality of an edict by Commerce Minister Kris Faafoi which favours supermarkets while Act leader David Seymour is questioning the pricing consequences of the business ban that has closed bakeries, butcheries and green grocers.

The Freedom of Speech Coalition meanwhile is threatening to launch an urgent judicial review of the Ministry of Culture and Heritage decision to deem non-daily newspapers and publications an unessential service for the purposes of the Covid-19 Level-4 nationwide shutdown.

Even while the government is hearing of price gouging by supermarkets, however, it is considering allowing those businesses to open on Good Friday and Easter Sunday.

Whether the Easter Trading Laws are amended to allow this will depend on whether they…

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