BVI News

Second, third readings of Consumer Protection Bill comes on the eve of 2020 hurricane season

The Consumer Protection Act will be one step closer to becoming law in the British Virgin Islands, as the Bill is scheduled to have its second and third readings in the Eighth Sitting of the Second Session of the Fourth House of Assembly that commences today, May 28.

During these stages of the proceedings, legislators will fully debate the Bill then carefully examine its contents which are subject to amendments. It may then be accepted or rejected by means of a vote.

The advancement of the Bill through the House comes days before the start of the 2020 Atlantic Hurricane Season.

The legislation has been highly anticipated, particularly in light of the practice of price gouging which is known to happen following a natural disaster such as a hurricane.

Free-priced market economy

The Consumer Protection Act is expected to explicitly establish the rights of both the consumer and the business to create a ‘free-priced market economy’.

Premier Andrew Fahie, in the meantime, has said the rising population of the territory and the inflation concerns were some key factors that were taken into consideration when the Bill was drafted.

The legislation, therefore, seeks to protect consumers from inflated prices on goods and services and, among other things, protect consumers from distributors selling expired goods.

Copyright 2020 BVI News, Media Expressions Limited. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or distributed.

6 Comments

Disclaimer: BVI News and its affiliated companies are not responsible for the content of comments posted or for anything arising out of use of the comments below or other interaction among the users.

  1. Anonymous says:

    A consumer economic enhancement clause must be an integral part of that legislation.

    A livable minimum wage must best considered and drafted into such legislation. As, the current slave wage pf six dollars in untenable.

    Like 12
  2. JOC says:

    I am so glad this is happening. We have so much businesses stealing for people with such high prices.

  3. Insurance says:

    Is there a clause that gives the consumer rights with regards to insurance claims or has this been left out for the cronies of the politicians. People need to be protected and have recourse when it comes to unscrupulous companies taking advantage for years of consumers and then disappear or won’t pay for valid claims. Please show this area in the Consumer Protection Act

  4. E. Leonard says:

    Consumer protection legislation is long over due. However, consumer protection legislation passed, though I have not seen the legislation, IMO, it may/may not offer the protection that a majority of residents are yearning for, have a hunger and thirst for——-price control, ie, rent, food control……etc.

    Without legislated control, prices will continue to be driven by supply, demand, competition, drive for excessive short-term over reasonable profit……etc. True, consumers, especially those at lower end of the economic ladder, need urgent relief from the skyrocketing cost of living. Nonetheless, price control may not totally meet the intended purpose; it often results in shortages and poor quality. For example, if there is price control on corn beef, merchants will probably import the poorest quality and cheapest brand.

    Further, some items they will not carry at all. Moreover, many in the labour force are non-skilled and may be earning $6.00 per hour, the current minimum or near minimum wage. Clearly, this is not a living wage. Minimum wage raised significantly, it could harm the people it is intended to help. Raising the minimum wage could result in less hires, increase in business labour expense, increase in prices…….etc.

    It will take both government, along with business owners, actions to bring down the cost of living that is exponentially rising. Actions are also needed to sustain lowered cost of living.

    Moreover, the consumer protection bill hopefully will detail responsibilities for both businesses and consumers in the delivering of goods and services. Consumers should expect that products or services purchased should be safe and of the quality agreed to and normally expected, service providers meet their contractual obligations……….etc.

  5. Disinterested says:

    @E. Leonard, stop being politically correct, “……drive for excessive short-term over reasonable profit……etc.” Call it what it is, unadulterated greed. The cost for price gouging before, during, and after a disaster should be severe, ie, stiff fines, consumer boycott …….etc. Know of a merchant in a near by regional country that is out business now for price gouging after a hurricane years ago; consumers boycotted the business afterward.

    Merchants who take advantage of a disaster and price gouge during consumers lowest hour are despicable. True, the cost of some goods sold may go up after a disaster and a commensurate price increase is reasonable. But everyone knows price gouging when they see it and experience it.

Leave a Comment

Shares