Looking at the volatility in the price of oxygen concentrators, especially during the past one month when the second wave of the Coronavirus pandemic was at its peak and demand for it had reached sky high, the Government has capped the trade margin on it to up to 70 per cent.
As per the information available with the Ministry of Chemicals and Fertilisers, the margin at the level of distributor currently ranges up to 198 per cent, a move which is aimed at preventing its black marketing.
The decision was taken by the National Pharmaceutical Pricing Authority (NPPA), and it has instructed all manufacturers and importers to report the revised maximum retail price within three days.
The cap was imposed on June 4 and the revised price will be put out in public domain within a week by NPPA.
The ministry has directed that every retailer, dealer, hospital and institution shall display the new price list as furnished by the manufacturer, on a conspicuous part of their business premises in a manner so that it is easily accessible to any person wishing to check the price.
Morever, the manufacturers and importers who don't comply with the revised MRP after trade margin capping, shall be liable to deposit the overcharged amount along with interest of 15 per cent and penalty up to 100 per cent under the provisions of the Drugs (Prices Control) Order, 2013 and the Essential Commodities Act, 1955.
State Drug Controllers have been asked to monitor the compliance of the order to ensure that no manufacturer, distributer and retailer sells oxygen concentrators to any consumer at a price exceeding the revised MRP, to prevent instances of black-marketing.
The order shall be applicable up to November 30, 2021 and would be subject to review.