PRESIDENT Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. is looking at teaming up with the private sector to bring down sugar prices in the country.
During a consultation with officials of the Philippine Chamber of Food Manufacturers, Inc. (PCFMI) on Monday, Marcos said he is seeking a concession with traders to tame sugar prices.
“Hopefully, we can get some concessions with the traders so that at least the pricing will be reasonable. The concern is the supply right now. I’ll make sure that there is sufficient supply in the country so that you can operate at full capacity,” he said.
Marcos said he is also eyeing direct importation by food manufacturers as part of emergency measures to address current industry concerns.
This will need the approval of the Sugar Regulatory Administration (SRA), which he chairs.
He acknowledged that despite the need for the country to increase sugar production in the future, the current pressing concerns of food producers must be addressed.
Marcos described the country’s sugar supply problems as “worrisome” and assured that government will exert efforts to increase supply of the commodity.
“It has become a worrisome problem. We are doing all of these things to protect the jobs of workers in those industries. So we are studying several measures that we can take to immediately increase the supply of sugar in the country,” he said.
In his weekly vlog on Sunday, Marcos said there might be a need to import sugar to stabilize domestic prices of the commodity.
He, however, noted that the Philippines might only need 150,000 metric tons (MT), half of the 300,000 MT earlier proposed by the SRA, if the supply is depleted by October.
The PCFMI is the principal organization of manufacturers and distributors of food products in the Philippines.
It is responsible for providing consumers with safe, nutritious, and affordable processed food products compliant to local and international standards and regulations. Philippine News Agency