Starting May 2008, the Hangzhou Price Bureau will collect price information of major commodity products from 19 influential retailers in the city, make comparisons and publish the results weekly. This is reportedly an innovation in China.
The major commodity products include grain, oil, non-staple food and consumer goods that are closely related to the daily lives of people. These products are further divided into conventional variety and temporary variety. Conventional variety cover 66 kinds of products, including rice, flour, cooking oil, pork, dairy, seasonings, drinks, daily washing supplies and appliances. The information of conventional variety will be collected and published year- round. Temporary variety will be decided by consumer hot spots and seasons.
Zhou Yidong, vice director of Price Monitoring Center of Hangzhou Price Bureau, told local media that the standards for choosing retailers are their retail sales and the wide distribution of their stores and the fame of these companies is also taken into consideration. The 19 retailers are all famous retailers in Hangzhou, including Lianhua, Tesco, Metro, Trust-Mart, Auchan, Carrefour, Hangzhou Tower, Hangzhou Intime, Suning, Gome and Yongle.
Apart from being handed in by sentinel units, the price information will be collected by city and district pricing departments. Then Hangzhou Price Bureau will compare, analyze, check and publish the information through specified news media. Consumers can also log on hzjg.gov.cn to make inquiries on the information.