It is no doubt the first time that this type of figures is published and this gives new unique and interesting light on the distribution circuits in Tunisia. Tha National Supply and Price observatory (NSPO), a structure within the ministry of trade and handicraft. It is, indeed, doing a lot of work in terms of price follow up in the different distribution networks in the country. In this way, NSPO makes a monthly follow up of all (60 components) the elements included in the housewife basket and representing the price indicators, including the price of water, gaz, electricity and transport. A statement about the price of 705 daily consumption products is also made in the 5 large retail distribution of the country, to determine and follow up the evolution and most importantly check competition between these large distributors so that it does not affect the consumer purchasing power.
These statements are used to make comparisons of the prices practiced in the different types of distribution circuits based on one single basket of products for all. For the first time, we have a real and authentic picture, on the price evolution in the large distribution areas which have started for some months important communication campaigns, each one presenting himself as the champion of price decreases and the preservation of the consumer purchasing power.
A first global look, based on a single basket for all, done in June is compared to the same statements of the month of May in the same year, the first conclusion to draw is that these large distributors are indeed cheaper than the corner grocer, who, we must recognise, shops in these large retail distribution areas.
We should reckon, though, that in July 2008, Géant was cheaper than the rest of the two Hypermarkets in the city and that both increased their prices by 2 % between May and June 2008. In the supermarkets which remain clearly more expensive than the Hyper, Monoprix is more expensive (and we, consumers, do notice this) than Magasin Général, even though both decreased their prices between May and July 2008.
|Value in DT||Basket value in July 2008||Basket value in May 2008||Difference
|Carrefour||95,028||93,087||+ 2 %|
|Magasin Général||100,363||101,750||-1,4 %|
|Commerçant Détail||110,694||107,000||+3,5 %|
NSPO says that the basket value in all the big retail distributors during the last months of 2007, had an upward trend from November 2007 and until May 2008, with an increase of 4,9 % during that period, then decreasing by 0,4 % during the month of July 2008. The Observatory which does not give any explanation for that, registered a rise of 0,5 % on dairy products and mainly Yaourt (5,2 %) and margarine (2,9 %). It also noted a rise of 1,1 % on drinks and juice, mainly due to a 3,3 % increase on the juice and 0,6 % on mineral water. The oil prices increased by 2,7 % and mainly vegetal oil (between 3,4 and 4,7 %) and olive oil (1,6 %). The rise is slight concerning the products based on sugar (mainly chocolate 1,5%) and the rise was more important relating to the hygienic products. The soap price climbed by 5,6 %, sprays by 3 % and baby nappies by 2,3 %. The increase in the price of detergents was more important (6,9 %) and washing powder (5,3 %).