The UAE will be implementing a price freeze on essential consumer goods across retail stores in the country during Ramadan.

The price hike ban, which is meant to protect consumers during the holy month, will apply to nine key items: cooking oil, eggs, dairy, rice, sugar, poultry, legumes, bread and wheat, according to Abdullah Sultan Al Fan Al Shamsi, Assistant Undersecretary for the Monitoring & Follow Up Sector at the Ministry of Economy.

For retailers to adjust their prices, they need prior approval from the government.

“The prices of essential goods cannot be increased without prior approval from the Ministry and relevant authorities, following the pricing policy for basic consumer goods,” a statement said.

“This policy includes a ban on raising prices for nine key items…”

The UAE government regularly monitors prices of consumer goods during Ramadan, when consumption tends to go up.

Over half of Muslim consumers in the UAE (53%) spent more money on food during Ramadan in 2022, according to Statistica.

The Ministry has already met with suppliers in the country to ensure there is adequate food supply throughout Ramadan. It will be deploying personnel to keep track of retail prices across the country.

 (Writing by Cleofe Maceda; editing by Seban Scaria)