Consumer group appeals to DTI to lower SRP of prime commodities

Maris Federez   •   May 9, 2019   •   1846

Price watch group, Laban Konsyumer, has filed an appeal before the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) to lower the suggested retail price (SRP) of prime commodities following the easing down of the Philippines’ inflation rate.

Based on the latest report of the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA), the country’s inflation rate has gone down to three percent in April – the lowest since January 2018.

Laban Konsyumer president Vic Dimaguiba said it is high time for the DTI to come up with a new SRP and that prices of a number of products; such as canned sardines, instant noodles, soaps, bottled water and other condiments, should have already been reduced.

“Ang amin pong panawagan eh napapanahon na para maramdaman naman ng mga consumer yang three percent inflation sa pamamagitan ng pagbaba ng presyo sa mga pangunahing bilihin [Our appeal is this. It is already high time that the consumers feel the three percent inflation thru the lowering of prices of basic commodities],” Dimaguiba added. (with details from Joan Nano) /mbmf

DTI eyes allowing dine-in services at 50% operational capacity

Marje Pelayo   •   May 22, 2020

MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) is looking into the possibility of allowing the resumption of dine-in services but at 50% workforce capacity in areas under general community quarantine (GCQ). 

DTI Secretary Ramon Lopez said they are planning to visit a number of restaurants and fastfood chains to check their compliance with the government’s minimum health standards and protocols in view of the current crisis brought about by coronavirus disease (COVID-19). 

“Napakahalaga ng dine-in. Sa ngayon ho nabubuhay sila sa take-out and deliveries. We were told na about 70% ang revenue na nanggagaling sa dine-in, (Dine-in services are important. For now, [restaurants] are earning through take-outs and deliveries. We were told that about 70% of their revenues come from dine-in service],” Lopez noted during a Senate hearing on Thursday (May 22).

Kapag tayo ay makumbinsi naman na safe po na kumain at mai-implement ang minimum health protocol (If we’re convinced that dining-in is already safe and minimum health protocols will be implemented), we shall allow — we will endorse the opening of dine-in,” he added.

Senator Cynthia Villar during the Senate hearing raised the idea of providing a recovery plan for restaurants particularly the small and medium enterprises (SMEs) that might close due to the COVID-19 pandemic.  

Inflation downtrend continues at 1.7% in August 2019

Aileen Cerrudo   •   September 5, 2019

The inflation rate in the Philippines continued to decline at 1.7% in August 2019, according to the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA).

The August 2019 rate is lower compared with the 2.4% inflation rate in June. This is also the lowest rate since October 2016 (1.8%).

According to National Statistician Dennis Mapa, the inflation downtrend is due to the slow increase of food prices, including non-alcoholic beverages.

He also said that the low fuel and rice prices also decreased since the implementation of the rice tariffication law.

Meanwhile, the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) estimates that the inflation rate will continue to go lower this September.

“The latest inflation outturn is consistent with the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas’ prevailing assessment that it will continue to decelerate in the third quarter of 2019 and picky up slightly in the fourth quarter,” according to BSP Governor Benjamin Diokno in a statement.—AAC (with reports from Harlene Delgado)

Malacañang believes downhill inflation to continue until end of year

Maris Federez   •   August 6, 2019

The country’s inflation rate in July has gone down to 2.4%, according to the latest Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) report.

This is lower compared with the 2.7% inflation rate in June and 5.8% in July of last year.

This is also the lowest since January of 2017, which was in the forecast of the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) to be in between 2 and 2.8%.

According to National Statistician Claire Dennis Mapa, a price reduction of food and non-alcoholic beverages; decrease in housing, water, electricity, gas, and other petroleum products rates; and decrease in transport rate contributed to the slowing down of the country’s inflation.

Across regions, Region 7 recorded the lowest inflation so far with 1.1 %, while Mimaropa registered the highest with 4.9%, which was attributed to the high expense in transportation.

Meanwhile, the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) is confident that the slowing down of the country’s inflation will continue for the rest of the year, and will achieve its target range of 3% for the whole year and on to the next.

In its statement released on Tuesday (August 6), the BSP said, “the inflation rate of 2.4 percent for July 2019 is consistent with the BSP’s prevailing assessment that inflation will continue to decelerate in Q3 2019 before firmly settling within the target range of 3.0 percent ± 1.0 percentage point for 2019 and 2020.”

Malacañang shares the agency’s confidence.

Presidential spokesperson Atty. Salvador Panelo said, “this is indicative of the hard work and strong political will of the President and our economic managers in reining in on the soaring prices of basic goods and services.”

“Filipino consumers can rest assured that the Duterte Administration will continue to work tirelessly in implementing macro-economic policies which will have a positive impact that can be felt by our nation,” Panelo added. (with details from Harlene Delgado) /mbmf


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