Supply, prices of basic goods remain stable in Zamboanga City despite conflict



MANILA, Philippines — Prices and the supply of basic necessities in Zamboanga remained stable despite the panic buying observed in parts of the region, the Department of Trade and Industry said on Thursday.

According to its bulletin update, the DTI reported that some of the businesses have resumed operations starting Wednesday. Establishments that have opened included public markets (Guiwan and Sta. Cruz); gasoline stations (Guiwan); six Jollibee branches out of the 10 that are in Zamboanga City; and four out of five Mercury Drugstore outlets.

The DTI said that banks and ATMs would remain open to aid the financial needs of consumers in the city.

Sardines manufacturers have reportedly assured the DTI of enough supply inventory, as this particular good is largely being distributed in evacuation centers.

Meanwhile, the Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry (PCCI) appealed to businesses in Zamboanga City, on Thursday, to continue with their normal operations in areas not affected by the military-rebel standoff.

“Based on the assessments of our regional and provincial PCCI officials in Mindanao, the crisis is contained in Zamboanga City,” PCCI president Miguel B. Varela said in a separate statement issued on Thursday.

“The police and the military likewise have taken proactive steps to prevent the spread of the crisis in other areas,” he added.

Varela said the assessments of PCCI officials in the area were based on consultations with the Zamboanga crisis management committee and their regular meetings with the Philippine National Police, the military, the community and the religious leaders in the region.

“Aside from the consultations, our officials have also validated through their own observations and site visits that security outside the affected areas has been heightened to ensure that commercial offices, banks, telecommunications companies, shopping malls, factories, the airport and ports are safe,” Varela further said.

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