Home Affairs Minister Peter Dutton has raised concerns drugs and other medical supplies are being hoarded to sell overseas during the coronavirus pandemic.
The federal government has announced a crackdown on price gouging and banned the export of masks, hand sanitiser, alcohol wipes and other supplies.
“Where we’re talking about medical supplies being diverted from our country at a time when we need those medical supplies for Australian citizens then that is a very serious problem,” he told 2GB radio on Thursday.
He said profiteering and diverting goods overseas had been made illegal.
“That is conduct which is unacceptable,” Mr Dutton said.
“It’s contrary to our national interest and that’s why we’re taking the decisions we have.”
Mr Dutton said there had been significant downturns in demand for food and other essential items in recent days as panic buying subsides.
He said people had no reason to think supplies could run out.
“We’re not going to close supermarkets in any circumstance,” he said.
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