Direct sugar importation of beverage makers bucked
MANILA -Local sugar groups have bucked the proposal of Finance Secretary Benjamin Diokno to allow sweetened beverage makers to directly import sugar, saying this will adversely affect the livelihood of the country’s sugar farmers.
The United Sugar Producers Federation (Unifed) and National Federation of Sugarcane Planters Inc. (NFSPI) said such a move would also likely fail to bring down the selling price of sweetened beverages.
“He (Diokno) wants to further enrich these industrial users even knowing that this move will kill the more than five million Filipinos who are dependent on the sugar industry,” Unifed president Manuel Lamata said in a statement on Tuesday.
“Allowing manufacturers of sweetened beverages to directly import sugar will wreak havoc on the long-established government regulations over the sugar industry, and it will further destabilize the livelihood of thousands of marginal sugarcane farmers,” NFSPI president Enrique Rojas added.
Unifed is urging President Marcos to intervene in the DOF’s plan since it will ultimately affect consumers because they will end up paying more for consuming sweetened beverages. INQ