Trade Secretary Fred Pascual is taking into consideration the preservation of jobs in the country amid the manufacturing industry’s call for price hikes.
He said the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) recognizes calls from the manufacturing industry to allow them to implement price increases, enabling them to continue and improve operations. The ongoing global inflation has greatly affected companies, especially those whose inputs are imported.
“We understand the need for prices to be calibrated towards market realities, taking into account both consumers and the value chain impacted, so jobs are preserved. Suppose these companies would only be able to cover the cost of production with price adjustments. In that case, operations would be affected, some products might be discontinued, and, worst, workers could lose their jobs if failing companies decide to close down. Kailangan balanse rin ang polisiya ng gobyerno. Patuloy natin itong pinag-aaralan,” Pascual added.
Despite the rising prices of goods, the Trade chief gave assurance that the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) tempers the impacts of the ongoing global inflation. Proof of this is the Suggested Retail Price (SRP) bulletin, which serves as a guide to consumers in making informed market choices. SRP adjustments are made at the request of manufacturers. However, price increases must be managed to ensure the availability and accessibility of affordable goods for Filipinos.
He emphasized that “factors such as fluctuating prices of raw materials depending on their sources, seasonal cycles, and climate changes affecting agriculture, varying global prices of fuel, changing manpower and logistics costs, and other market factors, both in the domestic and international platforms, preclude any regular or scheduled SRP bulletin issuance.”
The DTI also continues to study various factors that affect the prices of basic necessities and prime commodities (BNPCs) under its purview in order to issue a policy that will benefit both consumers and manufacturers. A balanced approach, in turn, is expected to boost economic activities that will pave the way for the country’s post-pandemic recovery. At the same time, this will support one of the priorities of the Marcos Administration: ensuring food security through the availability of affordable goods that would also sustain the economy’s consumption-driven growth.
Meanwhile, consumers are enjoined to report retailers, distributors, and manufacturers that sell basic necessities above their prevailing prices via One-DTI (1-384) Hotline or email, ConsumerCare@dti.gov.ph.