MANILA, Philippines– President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. extended the temporary tariff cuts on pork, rice, corn, and coal to augment supply as inflation soars to a 14-year high.
Marcos signed last December 29 Executive Order (EO) No. 10, which reduced the Most Favored Nation (MFN) tariff rates of the following items until December 31, 2023:
- Swine (fresh, chilled, or frozen)- 15% in-quota, 25% out-quota
- Corn- 5% in-quota, 15% out-quota
- Rice- 35% in-quota and out-quota
Coal was set at zero duty beyond December 31 but will be subject to a semestral review. The EO mandated the National Economic and Development Authority to monitor and analyze the coal market.
“The current global economic situation brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as other factors affecting the country’s traditional sources of rice, corn, coal, and fresh, chilled or frozen meat of swine, cause uncertainty in the steady supply of said commodities,” Marcos’s EO read.
“The high inflation caused by supply constraints, expected shortage in the global supply and rise in international commodity prices present economic and trade implications to the country and the Filipino people.”
Marcos’ predecessor, former president Rodrigo Duterte, earlier modified the MFN rates, as food prices rose amid the pandemic and Russia’s invasion on Ukraine.
Last November 2022, inflation jumped to a 14-year high of 8%. Government economists and multilateral lending institutions expect inflation to remain elevated in 2023. –Rappler.com