Tuesday, July 16, 2024

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Inactive import permits for pork, chicken to be cancelled, DA Secretary points to DTI on the price control

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To prevent the abuse of taking advantage of the use of MAV (minimum access volume) by other importers, Agriculture Secretary Emmanuel Piñol will cancel all the inactive import permits of those who hold on to their allocation and use this during the peak season so they would make more money.

Effective Monday, DA will cancel all import permits under MAV to be given to other companies willing to use the license.

Piñol believes that the reason they are not using it is that they want to hold on to their MAV allocation and hey’re waiting for peak months (‘ber’ months) where prices normally are high due to the high demand.

The MAV, or minimum access volume, is the allowed amount of imports that can enter the country at a certain lower customs duty, under an agreement with the World Trade Organization.

Piñol said that the primary purpose of the MAV allocations is to enable the private sector to “contribute to the stabilization of the supply and prices of the market.”

With the country’s inflation rate hit another fresh high of 5.7 percent this July, the prices of food and non-alcoholic beverages are inevitably affected.

The existing permits issued for pork is 41 percent and for chicken is 43.11 percent. Thus, DA has no other recourse but to give opportunity for others to use the license of those inactive importers.

The secretary explained that even as the retail prices of these food items continued to rise, their farmgate prices registered “negligible” increments, data from the Philippine Statistics Authority showed.

“The movement of the prices is caused by speculation,” he said. He also clarified, however, that the mandate of his agency was on the production side. “How to tame the market is the task of another agency, which is the DTI (Department of Trade and Industry),” he said in closing.

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