President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr. said on Tuesday that the implementation and enforcement of the mandated price caps on rice is going well as expected, based on reports by the implementing agencies of the Executive Order (EO) No. 39 during a sectoral meeting. 

“We just had a meeting about that this morning and, so far, the implementation and enforcement is going as well as we can expect,” the President said in a media briefing in Quezon City.

President Marcos acknowledged that it is expected that some small and micro rice retailers were hesitant to comply with the mandate as they were uncertain that they will receive a compensation.

He said the distribution of livelihood grants, led by the Department of Social and Welfare Development (DSWD), would help encourage them to comply with the enforced price cap. 

“Last Saturday, nagsimula na sila na magbigay ng tulong sa ating mga retailer at para nagkaroon naman ng effect na ‘yung iba na ayaw magtinda muna ng kanilang bigas ay dahan-dahang lumalabas na dahil nakakasiguro sila na kahit papaano mayroon silang matatanggap para kapalit doon sa kung malulugi sila dahil sa pagbili nila ng (bigas sa) mataas na presyo,” Marcos said.

Based on the initial list provided by the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), there are 5,942 affected rice retailers who have business permits in public and private markets, and may be considered for the grant based on the DTI’s vetting process. 

President Marcos reiterated that imposing the mandated price caps on rice in the long-term is not a sustainable solution to the problem of increasing prices of the staple in the market.

The President earlier mentioned the price cap is only temporary until sufficient supply from local producers and imports are available. | PND

Photo courtesy of PCO

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