P 21.75B in rice, pork import duties collected in ’21
The Bureau of Customs (BOC) collected in 2021 a total of P21.75 billion in duties on imported rice and pork amid efforts of economic managers to temper food inflation by encouraging the inflow of more supplies from abroad.
Of the total amount, P18 billion accounted for duties on rice imports, 22 percent higher than the P15.5 billion collected in 2020.
As for import tariff collected on pork, revenues reached P3.75 billion, including inflows in January 2022. The amount covered 242 million kilograms of hog meat that passed through customs.
Collection on rice imports go to the Rice Competitiveness Enhancement Fund (RCEF), for which the Rice Tariffication Law of 2019 allocates P10 billion each year.
The RCEF is used to finance programs that improve the competitiveness of local rice farmers through the provision of farm inputs such as fertilizer, farm machinery and equipment, high-yield seeds and cheap credit; and offering skills training programs on farm mechanization and modern farming techniques.
As for pork imports, the BOC estimates that it could have collected P4 billion more if not for presidential directives that lowered import tariffs on pork.
These were part of efforts to address the steep decline in domestic pork production amid the lingering prevalence of Asian swine fever in the country.
President Duterte issued two executive orders (EOs) intended to lower pork import tariffs and increase the allowable import volumes of the meat.
These directives were meant to quell inflation by boosting the supply of pork and stabilizing its retail prices in the domestic market.
EO No. 128 lowered pork import tariffs from 30 percent to 5 percent within its minimum access volume and 15 percent beyond the import quota for the first three months. INQ
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