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Lee calls for transparent price-setting system
제목 없음 President Lee Myung-bak on Thursday urged companies, especially market-dominant players, to set commodity prices in a transparent way, saying that prices often do not correctly reflect the market's supply-demand situation.

   "It is important for companies to pursue profits, but they should think from the perspective of public interest," Lee said during an economic policy consultation meeting, according to presidential spokeswoman Kim Hee-jung.

   "Wouldn't our society be much better if companies with market-dominant positions take public interest into account?" Lee was quoted as saying, calling for transparent price settings.

   Lee's remarks are seen as criticism of the current structure in which intermediary companies are quick to reflect increases in the prices of farming and fisheries products but slow to reflect decreases in such prices.

   Prices often rise even when the supply and demand are balanced in the international market, Lee said, voicing suspicions of "speculative" price settings.

   "We are looking closely into whether there are speculative elements in the process of distribution," he said.

   The government has been striving to tame inflation as concerns have grown that rising prices could emerge as a heavy drag on the country's overall economic recovery.

   The government is watching closely to see if there is any speculative element in the domestic distribution process of products, Lee said, adding there is a possibility of speculation if prices jump despite global supply and demand balance.

Source: Yonhap News ( May 26, 2011)

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