By Ernie Reyes
MANILA — Opposition Senator Francis “Kiko” Pangilinan
calls on the government, particularly the Department of Trade and Industry
(DTI), to immediately intervene in the looming increase in prices of bread
products as millions of Filipinos are still reeling from the catastrophic
effect of the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic and the recent devastation brought by
Typhoon Odette in the regions.
Pangilinan made this appeal amid reports that the
country’s biggest association of bread makers is seeking the government’s nod
to increase the price of their products, including packs of Pinoy Tasty and
“Sobrang bigat na ng pasanin ng taumbayan sa sunod-sunod
na pagtaas ng mga pangunahing bilihin. Dapat maging proactive ang DTI kesa
mag-aantay na lamang itong tumaas ang mga presyo na wala man lamang gagawing
paunang hakbang,” said Pangilinan who is an aspirant for the vice presidency.
He said the spiraling prices of basic commodities like
bread could also lead to a spike in cases of hunger especially among children
living in the most blighted areas of the country.
“Sila yung mga pinaka apektado kapag patuloy na tumataas
ang mga presyo at walang ginagawang lunas ang gobyerno,” said Pangilinan, who
is known for championing the cause of Filipino farmers and fisherfolk.
On Friday (January 7), the Philippine Baking Industry
Group (Philbaking) said the projected price increase of bread products is
triggered by the soaring prices of flour which have already gone up from P710
per sack to P995 currently.
Shortly after Typhoon Odette struck the country on
December 16, Pangilinan made a similar appeal to the national government to act
with lightning speed to safeguard the welfare of the public and ensure people’s
access to basic necessities. (ai/mtvn)