Philippines DTI to review cement import rules

Philippines DTI to review cement import rules
04 September 2017

Philippine Trade and Industry Secretary, Ramon Lopez, said the country's government plans to review the current rules on cement imports following an ongoing spat among importers and producers on a proposed preshipment inspection.

A draft DTI order is considering preshipment inspection as substitute for testing cement imports upon arrival in the Philippines. Several cement producers, including Eagle Cement Corp, Taiheiyo Cement Philippines, Cemex Philippines, Republic Cement and Northern Cement Corp, have urged the government to have imported cement tested rather than rely on preshipment inspection, citing consumer safety as the key issue.

However, the Philippine Cement Importers Association (PCIA) pushed for preshipment inspection not only because PCIA said it was consistent with international standards, but because “it prevents poor quality products from reaching the country.”

"If the imported cement products are brought in and tested in the Philippines as proposed by some sectors, what happens if they fail the standards test?" asked PCIA Executive Director, Dani Enriquez.
"What guarantees do we have that they will be shipped back to their country of origin? Unscrupulous importers who are bound to lose hundreds of millions will definitely find a way to smuggle into the market these sub-standard cement, which will be easy since the products are already here in the Philippines."

The government suggested that preshipment testing was proposed “to solve operational delays” after importers complained that the testing processing of checking upon arrival took days.  “Thus, the preshipment testing was proposed to solve the operational delays while still ensuring that the products that will come in are only those that pass the required standards test,” said Mr Lopez.

Published under Cement News

Tagged Under: legislation imports Philippines