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Barring expats from entering co-ops ‘illegal’

KUWAIT: The Consumer Protection Association slammed as illegal decisions made by a number of cooperative societies banning expatriates from entering for shopping and buying products during the holy month of Ramadan under the pretext that a large number of shoppers at co-ops leads to overbuying of Ramadan products sold at discounted prices.

“Preventing expatriates from entering any cooperative society and limiting products to citizens only is against the law,” Head of the Consumer Protection Association Meshaal Al-Manae said. “There is absolutely no justification for a co-op’s refusal to sell goods to consumers, whether citizens or expatriates. The consumer protection law protects against such decisions. Cooperative societies are establishments that have a commercial license from the commerce ministry and the market law applicable to other similar establishments also applies to them,” he said.

“We have notified the commerce ministry and concerned authorities of the importance of intervening and preventing such unstudied and harmful decisions,” Manae added. In this context, an official source at the National Guard Society denied reports circulated on social media about preventing sales to non-Kuwaiti consumers. “National Guard Society welcomes all segments of the Kuwaiti society, citizens or expatriates,” it stressed.

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