Bacolod: 60-day prize freeze ordered in Negros Oriental

photo courtesy of The Visayan Daily Star

Bacolod City – A 60-day price freeze on basic commodities was ordered by the Department of Trade and Industry in Negros Oriental, citing the the ill effects of El Niño phenomenon.

An advisory issued by DTI provincial office, which was posted in the Negros Oriental provincial government website, stated that the price freeze on basic necessities was made in pursuant to the declaration of the Sangguniang Panlalawigan on April 26, placing the province under a state of calamity.

The price freeze shall remain enforced until June 25 this year, unless sooner lifted, DTI advisory stated.

Among the goods that are subject to the price freeze are canned sardines, instant noodles, processed milk, bread, coffee, soap, salt, and bottled water.

Consumers are enjoined to report retailers that sell basic necessities at prices higher than the specified prices to the DTI-Negros Oriental Provincial Office.

The Price Act provides that any retailer found selling goods higher than the listed prevailing prices shall be imposed with an administrative fine of up to P1 million, or faces a maximum of 10 years imprisonment.

In declaring a state of calamity, the Negros Oriental provincial council said the El Niño has caused substantial damage to the agriculture sector due to extreme heat, and decrease in water supply, which has resulted in crop production and animal population.

Damage to the environment has also been reported as a result of wildfires, agricultural and grass fires, the provincial council said. (Gilbert Bayoran via The Visayan Daily Star)

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