DTI probes ‘triggers’ of sharp sugar price hikeBy Amy R. Remo
Philippine Daily Inquirer
MANILA, Philippines—The Department of Trade and Industry is probing the possible triggers that may have caused the P6-per-kilogram spike in the prices of sugar in the retail market.
In a phone interview, Trade Undersecretary Zenaida Maglaya confirmed that the prices of sugar went up to roughly P50 per kilo to date from only P44 a kilo a little over a month ago.
Maglaya said they have asked the Sugar Regulatory Administration (SRA) for a report as to what may be causing these price increases, considering that the agricultural agency has earlier assured the government of adequate sugar supply.
“To recall from the last meeting of the [National Price Coordinating Council], the SRA said we have more than enough supply. So I don’t think it is supply that’s causing these price movements,” Maglaya said.
She, however, noted that the country has started entering the so-called lean period for sugar, which usually ran from July to September.
Maglaya added that retailers, based on their feedback, said prices of sugar in the retail market have been rising because they have been buying sugar at higher wholesale prices.
“That’s why we have to go all the way back to the mill. We want to know what the mill gate prices are and what are the costs added by traders so we can find out exactly where and what are the triggers,” she added.
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