DA: Duterte approved ‘in principle’ higher volume of pork importation
MANILA, Philippines — President Rodrigo Duterte has already approved – “in principle” – the minimum access volume (MAV) Plus to increase the quantity of pork that may be imported at lower tariffs to the country, Agriculture Secretary William Dar said Monday.
The Department of Agriculture (DA) is planning to triple its pork importations from the current 54,000 metric tons (MT) to 162,000 MT.
“In principle, the President has already approved ‘yung MAV Plus. Nasa proseso lang po tayo para wala naman masabi na walang consultation na nagawa,” he said in a Laging Handa public briefing.
(We are in the process of consultations so that there will be no complaints that we did not hold consultations.)
Duterte earlier backed DA’s recommendation to look into expanding the MAV for pork to address the supply shortfall this year.
He has also ordered a 60-day price ceiling on pork as well as chicken products in Metro Manila.
The price ceiling for a kilogram of kasim and pigue is set at P270; liempo at P300; and dressed chicken at P160.
Dar blamed unscrupulous traders and wholesalers for the high prices of pork.
“Ang problema na nakita natin, itong nakalipas na three weeks, ‘yung mga biyahero, mga traders at saka mga wholesalers dito sa Metro Manila, sila ‘yung nagdidikta na ng mataas na presyo,” he said.
(The problem we see in these past three weeks, the traders, the shippers and the wholesalers dictate the high prices of pork.)
“Inaabuso kasi ng mga biyahero o ng mga traders at mga wholesalers, ‘yun ang pinaka-major problem natin ngayon,” he added.
(They are abusing it. That’s our major problem today.)
To further address the high prices, DA is shouldering the expenses of shipping pork products to augment the supply of pork in Metro Manila.
DA is providing transport costs to lower farmgate prices at a range of P165 to P171 per kilo. Transport costs have been set at P21 per kilo for those coming from Mindanao, P15 per kilo for those from the Visayas, Mimaropa, Bicol, and extreme northern Luzon, and P10 per kilo for those from Calabarzon and Central Luzon.
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