DTI approves commodity price hike

Aileen Cerrudo   •   February 25, 2019   •   2407

The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) has released a new list of suggested retail price where several prices of goods like milk, sardines and condiments went up.

Milk prices went up by P0.50 to P1.50 including condensed milk, evaporated milk and powdered milk. A well-known milk brand, from its previous price of P57, had over a six-peso increase.

There is also a surge of P0.40 to P1.75 in prices of sardines.

Iodized salt increased by P0.50 to P2.00 while prices of vinegar, soy sauce, and fish sauce went up by P1.00.

DTI Undersecretary Ruth Castelo said the said price hike on several products is due to the pending applications last year.

According to the department, they based their decision on the increase of manufacturing cost, raw materials, packaging as well as labor payment and oil prices.

Pinipilit natin talaga ibaba ang presyo as much as possible nga kung pwede mag-rollback but because of the three-month hold off period hindi tayo maka-rollback ng presyo…DTI will make sure na kung hindi justified ang reasons nila for increasing their prices hindi natin ipapa-increase talaga,” she said.

(We are trying to lower prices as much as possible. We want to rollback if possible but because of the three-month hold off period we cannot do so. DTI will make sure we will not increase prices if their reasons are not justified.)

The DTI said that 56 products have been approved for a price increase while prices of around 200 items will remain unchanged.

Some consumers are complaining of having to readjust their budget again.

“Mayadong mabigat na para sa budget sa araw-araw, iyong isang kain namin bali P200 na, tapos iba pa sa gabi, mahirap po para sa amin,” according to consumer, Vicky Marin.

(It is too much for our daily budget, one meal costs P200 already and it is different from dinner. It is difficult for us.)

“Mataas na iyong 100 grams, iyon lang ang budget kapag walang pera wala akong pambili ng malaki kasi syempre ang hirap ng buhay, mahirap pero wala tayong magawa,” another consumer, Aling Marilou, said.

(100 grams is high, that is our budget. With no money, I cannot buy. Life is difficult but we cannot do anything about it.)

For consumers to be able to make the most out of their budget, they can make a list of the things they need to buy and go to the market at a time where there is not much crowd to be able to find low-priced products.

It is better to buy in bulk to save money because we also pay for product packaging. Always keep on the lookout for sales or promos. — Aileen Cerrudo (with reports from Joan Nano)

QC lawmaker calls for arrest of hoarders, price manipulators of flu medicines

Maris Federez   •   January 6, 2022

MANILA, Philippines — Quezon City 2nd District Representative Precious Hipolito Castelo has called on the authorities to go after and arrest those who overstock and manipulate the prices of essential medicines such as paracetamol and flu medicines, resulting in pharmacies running short of supplies.

Castelo said there are existing laws and local ordinances that prohibit hoarding and price manipulation.

Castelo called on authorities to ensure that these laws and ordinances are strictly implemented to protect the interest and welfare of the public, especially the poor.

“The concerned authorities should enforce these to protect the interest and welfare of our people, especially the poor. Hoarding denies the poor access to essential products like medicines and increases the prices of these commodities,” Castelo said.

The Department of Health had earlier said that there is no shortage of paracetamol or other flu medicines.

The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), however, confirmed that two popular brands of pharmaceutical company, Unilab, have run out of stock in other areas in the country.

DTI Secretary Ramon Lopez ensured that new stocks of these medicines will be delivered the soonest time possible. —/mbmf (from the report of UNTV Correspondent Nel Maribojoc)

Employers urged to strictly enforce protocols, promote work-from-home setup amid rising COVID cases

Robie de Guzman   •   January 6, 2022

MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Health (DOH), Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE), and the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) on Wednesday reminded employers from the public and private sectors to firmly enforce minimum public health standards amid increasing cases of COVID-19 in the country.

In a joint statement, the agencies said employers should also “encourage work-from-home setup or alternative work arrangements, whenever possible,” saying it is critical during this period of exponential increase in cases.

For those working on-site, the employers are reminded to implement the following:

  • Assign and designate health safety officers to remind employees of minimum public health standards as well as to monitor and track symptoms
  • Ensure proper ventilation and avoid closed spaces
  • Close down pantries or areas where people can meet up maskless.
  • Facilitate isolation for symptomatic (for 10 days) or quarantine for close contacts (14 days non-vaccinated, 7 days vaccinated) and testing of symptomatic employees
  • Provide adequate assistance for individuals who are undergoing quarantine and isolation such as support for medicine, food, and others
  • Promote the use of bicycles or walking to the office to avoid exposure in crowded places
  • Comply strictly on inspecting proof of vaccination in premises or business operations where these are required by the IATF

“Employees with symptoms should stay home, isolate, and maximize the use of telemedicine services with healthcare providers,” the statement read.

Options for telemedicine services can be viewed at this link.

“All employers are strongly encouraged to coordinate with the local government unit’s epidemiological and surveillance unit for specific response and reporting guidance,” the agencies said.

Drug firms working to replenish supply of paracetamol in pharmacies – DTI

Robie de Guzman   •   January 5, 2022

MANILA, Philippines – Pharmaceutical companies are now working to speed up the delivery of stocks of popular brands of paracetamol following reports on its lack of supply in drugstores, the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) said Wednesday.

In an advisory, the DTI said the popular brands of paracetamol went out of stock in some pharmacies “due to the sudden increase in demand.”

Paracetamol is a medication used to treat common pains and fevers.

The DTI reiterated that there was no shortage of paracetamol and other medicines used to manage flu-like symptoms.

“Rest assured that there is enough supply, and deliveries are being expedited to replenish retail stock inventories,” the department said.

In a radio interview, DTI Secretary Ramon Lopez said manufacturers did not expect the rise in demand for paracetamol and other medicines, and the pharmacies’ normal inventory was not prepared.

He urged the public not to panic buy and to only purchase the necessary quantity.

“The Department of Trade and Industry is also in touch with drugstores and pharmacies to limit purchase quantity and prevent panic buying,” the DTI said.

The Department of Health (DOH) earlier said that paracetamol has many generic alternatives in the market, which are available in many drug stores nationwide. Other medicines for cough and colds are also available.

The department also appealed to consumers “to refrain from hoarding, panic-buying or unnecessary purchases of such medications when not clinically warranted.”




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