sugar industry
In a resolution adopted by the Senate, senators said the planned sugar liberalization “will contradict the president’s thrust towards food security and will severely affect the entire agriculture sector.”
Ernie Penaredondo, file
Senate wants sugar liberalization plan scrapped
(Philstar.com) - November 12, 2019 - 5:59pm

MANILA, Philippines — The Senate has urged the executive branch to scrap its plan to open up the local sugar industry to importation, saying the move could be “disastrous” to small farmers and agrarian reform beneficiaries.

In a resolution adopted by the Senate Monday, senators said the planned sugar liberalization “will contradict the president’s thrust towards food security and will severely affect the entire agriculture sector.”

“The deregulated entry of subsidized sugar into the Philippine market will be disastrous to our sugar industry, which contributes an estimated P96 billion to the gross domestic product,” they said.

All the senators—except Sens. Lito Lapid, who is on official business abroad and Leila de Lima who is in detention—signed the resolution.

Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez III said in July that the government is taking a close look at sugar import liberalization because domestic prices are double the world market price, weighing on the competitiveness of the food processing industry.

Last September, the Department of Finance said “reforms are needed to introduce competition in the sugar industry.”

“Quantitative restrictions need  to be replaced by tariffs and safeguard measures (for subsidized products) to allow for more transparent, competitive pricing and allow downstream industries to become more viable and grow as fast as their ASEAN counterparts,” the DOF said in an economic bulletin. — Ian Nicolas Cigaral

SUGAR LIBERALIZATION
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