PCC to release results of review on rice soon

Richmond Mercurio - The Philippine Star

MANILA, Philippines — The Philippine Competition Commission (PCC) will release soon the results of its market review on rice, the first of nine sectors to be scrutinized for possible anti-competitive practices.

The outcome of the study will determine if there is a need for the antitrust body to open a case or undertake necessary measures to address the concerns.

PCC commissioner Stella Quimbo said a market study for the rice industry has been completed recently, but the agency saw the necessity to conduct a second phase.

“A market study we conducted on rice is not yet completed in the sense that there are still other issues that still need to be studied using more data that are not yet available,” she said.

Phase 1 used more aggregate data which is like national level data and a little bit of regional data. We said we really need a Phase 2 because of very broad strokes and conclusion for Phase one due to data limitation,“ Quimbo added.

In January, at least nine business sectors have been identified for review for potential anti-competitive concerns.

The sectors include rice, meat and poultry, pharmaceuticals, land transportation, air transportation, agricultural credit, digital commerce, retail and telecommunications.

“Ultimately, you just want competition concerns to be identified, that’s the ultimate purpose of the market study,” Quimbo said.

“Once we see that identification, the listing of possible competition concerns, the next step of PCC is to figure out what the next steps are. Will we open a case or maybe the cause of the competition concern is an anti-competitive government regulation, in which case maybe we can talk to the government agency involved,”she added.

Quimbo assured that results of all the market studies for the nine sectors would be completed this year.

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