Planters lament ‘excessive importation’ will cause prices to drop
By Dominique Gabriel G. Bañaga
The Confederation of Sugar Producers’ Associations (Confed) is calling for the Sugar Regulatory Administration (SRA) to amend Sugar Order No. 5, which sets importation policies for the current crop year, claiming the order does not bear the signature of the administrator.
In a manifesto signed by United Sugarcane Planters of Davao Multipurpose Cooperative National President Ferdinand Marañon, “The order speaks volumes about policy disagreements within the ‘Sugar Board’ and raises questions about its failure to agree on such an important matter as sugar importation.”
The current policy mandates the importation of 250,000 metric tons of refined and bottler’s grade sugar for the 2018-2019 crop year.
Marañon pointed out a need for a timely and “judiciously-calibrated” importation program, noting, according to projections, only an additional 135,000 metric tons needed to be imported for the aforementioned crop year.
He said “excessive importation” will cause domestic prices to drop.
As an alternative, Confed suggests staggered importations based on projected need and domestic production, along with granting import allocations based on need as determined by a supply-demand analysis./DGB, WDJ