No matter how small

No matter how small

St. Maarten consumers should be getting a break starting Monday, as the new basket of basic goods (see related story) takes effect. The number of items in it was increased from 12 to 72.
To what extent that spells relief obviously remains to be seen, as much depends on the maximum prices for them set by government compared to what local mini- and supermarkets currently charge. The public won’t know until Friday, when a new website with relevant information is to be launched.
People ought to guard against too-high expectations, because practically everything has grown more expensive globally and recent importers’ invoices used in the calculations no doubt showed it. However, the measure could at least ensure a reasonably modest profit margin is maintained for these necessities.
While updating the outdated list to modern times certainly seems sensible, implementing and enforcing the six-fold expansion will take work and some “teething problems” cannot be excluded. For example, many of the essentials involved come in several varieties, so there may be confusion between certain types, brand names, etc., especially in the beginning.
Nevertheless, this will hopefully have a favourable impact on Dutch-side grocery bills and – along with the fuel rates reductions introduced earlier – help keep inflation under control. Considering the present situation, any positive difference made in the cost of living, no matter how small, is indeed very welcome.

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