DTI on Guard At Price Increase of Commodities Because of Excise Tax

On Wednesday, the Department of Trade and Industry  (DTI) had assigned more of its employees on price watch to closely monitor the price movements in the market after the tax reform package had been signed and became a law last month.

Under the Tax Reform for Acceleration and Inclusion Act (TRAIN) law, sugar and non-sugar based drinks were among those who will be affected where P6 per liter will be added to the price of the drinks using sweeteners and P12 per liter will be added to beverages using high-fructose corn syrup, respectively.

Softdrinks, a favorite among most Filipinos will also hit P3 to P13 increase in prices.  Consumers get dismayed over price increase and just opted to lessen their consumption of sodas.

On the other hand, there will also be P6 price increase on powdered drinks and P2 on energy drinks, respectively.

The price of three-in-one coffee still remains the same but price increase will be applied to ready-to-drink coffee and other breakfast drinks.

Under the TRAIN law, cigarettes will somehow be most affected by remarkable price increase from P64 to P109 for menthol cigarettes and from P 67 to P85 for non-menthol brands.

The TRAIN is part of the Comprehensive Tax Reform Program of the government which aims to raise revenues for its programs.

Steven Cua, the president of Philippine Amalgamated Supermarkets Association (PAGASA) considered the said price increase to be alarming.

“Start of the year ‘yan eh, so nobody wants to stock up. Kung wala nang stock at kailangan magreplenish, at new prices na. At medyo alarming ‘yung increase in some of those products concerned.” 

The price increase is against DTI’s concern for market prices not to be affected by the TRAIN law or at least, only a percentage of it will be added to the cost.

“Hindi kaagad-agad naipapasa ito. Ina-absorb ‘yan usually nung mga iba-ibang brand dahil karamihan ay takot ding mag-galaw ng mga presyo nila,” Lopez said.

Meanwhile. contrary to DTI’s claim that manufacturers spend less than 5% of the cost to transport their products, Cua insisted that the oil price increase will definitely cause the prices to go up.

“Hindi isang transfer from the plant, diretso doon sa shelves ng supermarket. May ilan yang dinadaanan. Traffic is one of the constraints, or one of the things which is causing prices to go up.” – via GMA News

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