Wal-Mart Says It’s Cooperating With China Government on Prices

Wal-Mart Stores Inc., the world’s largest retailer, said it’s working to ensure stable prices in the southwestern Chinese city of Kunming after a government order to justify and give advance notice of increases.

The company has noticed the situation in Kunming and is working with governments and suppliers to guarantee “supply of products, in particular daily necessities, as well as a steady price,” Wal-Mart said in an e-mailed statement today. The Bentonville, Arkansas-based retailer is cooperating with both the local and central government, it said.

Kunming, the capital of Yunnan province, on Dec. 3 ordered five retailers including Wal-Mart and Carrefour SA to report and give justifications for any price changes two days before making alterations. Kunming’s consumer prices in the first 10 months rose 4.4 percent, the highest among China’s 36 large- and medium-size cities, the local government said in a statement.

Carrefour China spokesman Chen Bo did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

China’s attempts to combat inflation have sent stocks and commodities sliding on speculation that the efforts will cool the world’s fastest-growing major economy. The country’s State Council, or cabinet, said Nov. 17 price caps on “important daily necessities” and production materials will be used if necessary.

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