CNA – With the Goods and Services Tax (GST) rising by one percentage point to eight per cent since January 1, some shops have accordingly updated their prices to reflect the increase.
CNA visited various stores to check the price difference on a random selection of items before and after the GST hike kicked in.
While some stores increased their prices, no signs were put up informing customers of the change. Others displayed notices about the transition to the new prices.
At health and beauty chain Guardian, prices remained the same for some household products and increased for others. While a face mask still cost SGD2, a tube of 150 grammes (g) Colgate toothpaste increased from SGD6.50 to SGD6.60.
In response to queries, a spokesperson said prices of more than 1,000 products across its stores did not change, but did not specify a period for this.
Instead, Guardian said that it would “periodically review” prices to ensure its health and beauty essentials are kept affordable.
“On top of this, we have several initiatives to help Singaporeans save including our Low Prices Locked programme which launched in June 2021, ensuring that daily essentials are affordable for our customers every day.”
The spokesperson added that Guardian has “significantly expanded” its range of house brand products, offering customers “great quality products at lower prices than the leading brands”.
At the NTUC FairPrice outlet in Bukit Ho Swee, a sign at the cashier stated that its “electronic shelf labels are currently being updated to reflect the new GST”.
“During this time, we ask for your understanding that there might be a slight variation between the shelf label and checkout prices of products. Should such a discrepancy occur, kindly refer to the checkout price,” it said.
FairPrice said in November last year that it will offer discounts to offset the GST hike for 500 essential items in the first half of this year.
A notice at Popular bookstore in NEX mall informed shoppers about a price increase due to the GST hike. It told customers to refer to a new pink label on its products for the current price.
When CNA visited the outlet on January 4, only storybooks were tagged with pink price labels, while stationery items still carried white labels. Prices of products such as highlighters, pens and foolscap paper remained the same as before the GST hike.
Meanwhile, Japanese retail chain Daiso – previously known for selling a variety of household items at a flat rate of SGD2 – increased prices for the second time since it first did so on May 1 last year.
Prices on its 15-tier pricing system now range from SGD2.16 to SGD25.70 with GST, up from SGD2.14 to SGD25.47.
The new price range factors in a one percentage point increase in the GST for each tier and has been in effect since January 1. Signs showing the new prices were placed in its outlets ahead of the new year.
Daiso previously said it is raising prices due to the rising costs of raw materials and logistics.