The Department of Trade and Industry’s (DTI) intensified price monitoring, including cement, continues to be a priority of the government.
This is part of the crackdown on unscrupulous businessmen who are unreasonably raising the prices of basic goods because of the additional 2 percent value added tax.
DTI-General Santos City Field Office conducted a meeting last April 27 among cement manufacturer, dealers, and retailers.
The said meeting was a concrete response to reports that some retailers in the city are imposing unreasonable price increases on cement.
"We wanted to solve the problem on the lack of supply of cement in General Santos City due to the delayed arrival of the vessel carrying cement sourced out from manufacturer in Iligan City," DTI Assistant Regional Director Doris Delima explained.
Delima also added that because of the given supply situation, some retailers took advantage and increased the price of cement.
Holcim Philippines Incorporated together with the DTI requested the cooperation of cement dealers and retailers to peg the price of cement at prevailing price, prior to the delay of delivery, since there is no increase in price of cement as far as the Holcim is concerned.
"We urge our fellow retailers to maintain the old price of cement," said Manny Yaphockun, one of the major cement dealers in General Santos City.
"We are not denying from these businesses their right to a fair return of investments. But if we find that their selling prices are unreasonable and unjustifiable, then they will be penalized for violating the Price Act or any of the fair trade laws," said by Arnel Sayco of DTI General Santos City.
Delima warned that they would not hesitate to implement the law to protect the welfare of the consumers.
With this, she urged the public to aid the government in clearing the market of unscrupulous practices by remaining vigilant and mindful of their rights as consumers.