Friday, March 14, 2008

Call to form Asian Inflation Watch Web for Consumers

Have been talking about this idea with activists for weeks, and wanting to put this message online for some time, but didn't have time not just due to works but also that lame bastard famiLEE LEEgime had been putting me on trial for some of my GE2006 speeches. :-) Court called me today to say that judge wants to see Dr CSJ & myself on Monday 17.Mar.2008 while the originally scheduled verdict was 22.Mar.2008, now expecting some further delays.

Any way, I am calling Asian NGOs, Consumer Groups & Cyber-Activists to collaborate in a joint effort to MONITOR this monster of of INFLATION via a centralized online MYSQL database & web. This have to be a multinational and regional effort to provide cross comparison of INFLATION DATA, acquired online from markets in the various countries.

The aim is to counter-profiteering and exploitation through opened monitoring and comparisons.

The coverage I thinks should include consumer paid prices in:

  1. Food Items
  2. Energy / Utility
  3. Fuel
  4. Transportation / Commutation
  5. Clothing
  6. Rental

I am not sure weather to include wages - not the economic authority here. :-)

There is no intention on my part to provide the complete idea, I would just initiate this and hope those with better knowledge and experience to refine and implement it.

Online exchange rate figures should be captured into the calculation and graph plot to reflect the inflations in various sectors in different countries and economies. Software are readily available to handle this, with necessary setup and maintenance to be taken care of.

Regarding this idea the most effective thing I can foresee is the cross border comparison in e.g. Singapore & Malaysia, where identical retail businesses exist on both sides. E.g. Cold Storage Giant & Seng Siong, therefore we can really compare apple to apple, to reflect the inflation of identical merchandise sold by same store in different cities. With the exchange rate of the relevant dates calculated there is no escape but to just reveal any differentials. :-)

We can not blindly trust nor make naive assumption that Finance Ministers will do their jobs Trade Ministers will take care of consumers as they should. Take no chance! DIY our own protection ASAP!