Pay and you will get the answers
MAS is keen to know why some goods sold here are more expensive than in other countries or why the prices were different. A tender has been called to conduct a study on the causes. I think they roughly know that some of the factors could be labour, rent, tax, regulations, cost of living, markups, advertising, preference, the weather, hype, consumer irrationality, cost of govt, profiteering, no choice, monopoly, affordability etc etc. The affordability factor is unique to Sin as it means that the seller can sell at any price as long as the consumer has the money and willing to pay, or has no choice but to pay.
Paying for this survey will come up with a clear picture of the whats and the whys of expensive things. Hopefully it will be used to bring down prices so that things that are expensive for rubbish or wrong reasons can be made cheaper. But this is conditional on the caveat that the affordable logic is not used.
I think this will also be useful to me to know how to price my red bean soup too. Then I will know why my red bean soup is more expensive here than in Batam and JB. And for sure I will not price my red bean soup using the affordable logic as I cannot control the supply and demand.
And definitely the survey will help Boon Wan to price his HDB flats. At least he would know why the public flats here are more expensive than in other countries, if he still didn’t get it, and maybe he could then price the flats correctly, and be more affordable. Oops, don’t use the term affordable or the affordability logic can?
I strongly recommend that the Housing Minister also call for a tender to survey why housing prices are so high here. Tenders are useful instruments when conducted properly and the results would be objective and beneficial to who ever commission it.