The trade ministry has embarked on an awareness campaign to share information and deliberate on issues of consumer protection and liquor licensing.
At the stakeholders’ engagement last Friday in Windhoek, trade minister Lucia Iipumbu said this will provide in-depth knowledge and skills in order to effectively address and provide extension assistance to entrepreneurs when faced with challenges in the administration of the Liquor Act. Furthermore, it is to ensure that information reaches all relevant stakeholders and consumers for the proper implementation of the national consumer protection policy, which was launched last year.
“I urge us all to take advantage of this opportunity, and strongly encourage a full and active participation during our engagement so that this will culminate in the long-term growth of our businesses that may drive our economic prosperity and structural transformation,” she stated. The ministry launched the national Consumer Protection Policy 2020 to 2025 in September 2021 with the main objectives of seeking an effective consumer protection framework, and to develop the knowledge and skills necessary for consumers to understand their rights associated with their spending and investment choices as well as to encourage fair trade in order to ensure a competitive economy.
In the same vein, Iipumbu said the policy has highlighted the need for legislation to address unfair commercial practices affecting businesses and consumers, including marketing tactics, advertising campaigns, sales promotions and other commercial practices directed at influencing consumer decisions in the marketplace.
According to her, government considers the effective protection of consumer rights as a vital component.
The event was attended by different stakeholders such as local authorities, consumers and the business community to collectively assist entrepreneurs in meeting government half- way in establishing practical business solutions.
The ministry administers the Liquor Act, Act No 6 of 1998 which makes provision for the licensing of all establishments in the supply and sale of liquor in the country.
“We have to applaud ourselves for according ourselves this opportunity to deliberate and ensure the Act is understood and complied with in its current form by all of us as stakeholders for the sole benefit of all Namibians in different industries or other social portfolios,” she observed.