After rumours circulated markets would close soon due to the spread of covid-19 residents in Kachin State started panic shopping.
Kachin State Minister for Ministry of Development Affairs Naw Li dispelled the gossip, telling KNG all markets will remain open unless the central government tells him otherwise. “It’s just a rumour and all the markets will stay open unless we get direct orders from the Union government. If we close them it will be difficult to buy food and other things people need,” Naw Li said.
Fear of the coronavirus in Myanmar is creating a lot of anxiety and it’s leading to panic, he said. “We’re committed to keeping all food stalls open so people can buy food and rice whenever they need.”
“People are very worried about the spread of covid-19 and it’s making them panic buy. We’re concerned because it’s causing food prices to increase. We’d like everyone to calm down and trust the government,” Naw Li told KNG.
The minister recently met the Kachin State Rice Trader Association and told KNG there’s nothing to worry about because there’s plenty of rice.
Zaw Htay, the spokesperson for the Burma government and director-general of the State Counsellor’s Office, warned about price gouging during the coronavirus pandemic promising offenders would be penalized.
Food costs have increased following gossip about infected Chinese nationals that collapsed in Kachin State.
Since the covid-19 was discovered in December there have been 549, 576 confirmed infections and 24,887 have been killed in 199 countries according to data obtained by the World Health Organisation on March 27. There have been 128,701 recoveries. Nearly 3 billion people are under covid-19 lockdowns around the globe.