MAKATI CITY – The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) is releasing the new Suggested Retail Prices (SRPs) of basic necessities and prime commodities on Friday, 07 December 2018, following the three-month price hold-off that ended last 01 December 2018. The Department, through its Consumer Protection Group (CPG), had a series of consultative meetings with the manufacturers of basic and prime goods to discuss about their prices in preparation for the release of said list.
“The DTI is pleased to announce that all basic and prime goods in the SRP Bulletin are retaining their current SRPs at least until the first quarter of 2019, with the exception of a few brands of canned sardines and one corned beef that will have adjustments in their prices. There are also several brands of bread and one milk brand that initiated to decrease their prices as part of the manufacturers´ social contribution to the consumers this holiday season despite not being included in the SRP list,” said Trade Secretary Ramon M. Lopez.
Gardenia Bread is reverting to its October prices of P46.75 and P62.00 for Gardenia Loaf Bread 400g and 600g, respectively. Gardenia Pandesal also lowered its price by P1.00 from P37.00 to P36.00 per pack. Marby, another producer of bread, is selling its Super Loaf Bread 600g and Wheat Bread at promotional prices of P58.00 and P61.50, respectively, which are P5.50 and P10.00 lower than its regular prices. This promo lasts until 30 April 2019. For milk, Alaska Fortified Milk Drink 80g will be sold at a discounted price of P29.00 until the end of the year. This is P0.50 lower than its regular price.
|Brands with price increases||——–||Brands with price decreases|
|555 Sardines in Tomato Sauce||155g||Gardenia Bread||400g|
|555 Bonus Pack||155g||Gardenia Bread||600g|
|Lucky 7 Sardines in Tomato Sauce||155g||Soft Delight Pandesal||350g|
|Ligo (Easy Open Can)||155g||John Pullman Super Loaf Bread||600g|
|Family Bonus Pack Plain||155g||Marby Whole Wheat||600g|
|Family Regular Pack Plain||155g||Alaska Fortified Powdered Milk||80g|
|Mega (Easy Open Can)||155g|
|Hakata (Easy Open Can)||155g|
|Star Corned Beef||150g|
The increase in the price of some brands of canned sardines ranges only between P0.40 to P0.85. This is heavily attributed to the high acquisition cost of herring fish (tamban) that is currently priced at P32.00 per kilo. To address this issue, producers of canned sardines suggested for the government to set an SRP for tamban to reduce its cost and eventually pull down the retail price of canned sardines in the market. The Department is set to meet with the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR) to study this proposal for possible consideration.
Only one brand of corned beef moved its price higher due to the rising cost of beef forequarter, a major raw material of said product.
“Our consumers can rest assured that these increases are in their absolute minimum, as DTI continues to negotiate with the manufacturers to ensure that prices of basic and prime goods remain to be reasonable while businesses maintain a fair return on their investment,” according to Undersecretary Ruth Castelo of the Consumer Protection Group.
The DTI highly appreciates the efforts of the manufacturers to maintain the reasonableness of prices of basic and prime goods for the consuming public and especially commends those that initiated price decreases even if their products are not included in the SRP Bulletin.
Prices expected to go down
With recent developments on the economic factors affecting the prices of goods, the DTI projects further decreases in the SRPs in the first quarter of the coming year. Dubai crude oil prices have gone down by 14% from an average of USD 79 per barrel in October down to USD 68 per barrel in November. It is projected for the price of oil to decline further to below USD 60 per barrel in 2019, indicating a downward trend in world oil prices. The Philippine Peso, on the other hand, steadily grows stronger against the US Dollar which is now at the 52-peso range from P54 in September.
The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) is projecting for the November 2019 inflation to settle within the 5.8 to 6.6 percent range which could be attributed to the sharp decline in petroleum prices, normalization of supply conditions in rice and other agricultural commodities, and the peso appreciation. Prices of raw materials for basic and prime goods such as tin and flour have likewise been stable or decreasing in the world market.
On why the decrease in prices of basic and prime goods will be felt early next year and not this December, Secretary Lopez explains, “Current stocks of manufactured basic and prime goods in the market were produced during the third quarter of this year when inflation, fuel price, foreign exchange rate, and other factors surged. As these began to decline in the last quarter of this year, we can expect that goods produced in this period using cost components that are acquired at lower prices will be distributed in the market early next year.”
The DTI continuously monitors the prices of goods and their raw materials, and developments in the world market and domestic economy to ensure that prices of basic and prime goods are kept at reasonable levels for the consuming public. The manufacturers were likewise informed by the Department that their SRPs will be reviewed again to ensure that decline in the prices of fuel and raw materials, acceleration of peso, and other contributing factors will be reflected in the prices of their products. (DTI)