The SKM Chamber of Commerce warns about a coming huge spike in food prices, caused by the rise in energy costs and in some important raw materials in the food industry, such as the cooking oil.

It is up to the Government to support the industry. Otherwise, prices could go up as far as 40 to 50 percent. Farmers saw their costs go up by 70 to 80 percent. Prices and cereals and oil seeds are up between 20 and 100 percent. The dairy industry saw its inputs rise by 10 percent. If the wave of cost hikes is allowed to go unchecked, consumers will be hit by huge spikes in prices that will affect their living standards, said SKM representative Vasko Ristovski.

His comment comes after SKM head Branko Azeski warned about the large rise in electricity prices in the region. According to Ristovski, other countries, such as Albania, are helping their importers of farm products with subsidies, and now their market is flooded with produce. Serbia, on the other hand, is banning exports of necessary raw materials, he added, calling on Deputy Prime Minister Fatmir Bytiqi to propose some of these measures before the Government.