The price of goods in the capital city of Hanoi over the Tet holidays would increase by less than 1 per cent, forecast deputy head of Hanoi 's Industry and Trade Department Nguyen Van Dong at a press conference on Nov. 15.

"The price increase at Tet is unavoidable. To limit this, city authorities and local companies are making every effort to prepare enough goods for both new year holidays," Dong said.

"With our efforts, we hope that the price will only increase by between 0.5 per cent and 0.7 per cent," Dong added, noting that this level was lower than in previous years.

According to Dong, the total goods volume needed for Christmas, New Year and Tet (Lunar New Year) was estimated to surge by 20-22 percent against previous months with a total value of about 24 trillion VND (1.1 billion USD).

To meet the goals of fully meeting demand and stabilising prices, 15 companies will join in the city's price stabilisation programmes.

Those companies will receive interest free loans of 475 billion VND (22.6 million USD) from the city's People's Committee to stock and stabilise the prices of nine commodities including rice, pork, eggs, cooking oil, vegetables and some processed seafood.

Along with the city's support, those companies will use their own capital to double their stockpiled products.

"They will also be responsible for organising 653 outlets for those goods," Dong said.

The outlets would be set up in both central and rural areas, he said.

This year, the city is also encouraging handicraft villages to join in the price stabilisation programme.

According to Dong, supervision would be strict this year to avoid smuggling, speculation and counterfeit goods.

"There will be about 600 supervisors checking quality, food safety and prices in stores and supermarkets," he said./.