DTI to penalize sellers who overprice ‘Noche Buena’ products

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Tuesday, December 17, 2013


STORES that are caught overpricing “Noche Buena” products will be penalized in accordance with the Fair Trade law, an official of the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) said Monday.

Almer Massilones, chief of consumer welfare of the DTI in Misamis Oriental (DTI-MisOr), said the penalties will be based on the revised schedule of penalty under the Fair Trade law.

As to the exact amount of the penalties of overpricing Noche Buena products, Massillones said it will be based on Department Administrative Order No. 06, series of 2007 (DAO 06-2007).

DAO 06-2007 is also known as the “Revised Schedule of Administrative Fines for Violations of the Consumer Act of the Philippines and some Trade and Industry Laws.”

The said order also covers Republic Act (R.A.) No. 7581 or the Price Act, R.A. No. 71 or the Price Tag Law, among others.

Based on DAO 06-2007, the fines imposed for violating the Consumer Act of the Philippines depends on the capitalization.

Fines

If the capitalization is below P20,000 the corresponding fines range from P500 to P1,500. But if it is above P200,000 the range would be from P30,000 to P50,000.

Eliza Pabillore, DTI-Misamis Oriental provincial director, said that based on their monitoring there are stores which are not following the standard retail price, thus, a “show cost” order will be issued to them.

Show cost orders are given to retailers to give them a chance to explain the price increase.

“If there is no sufficient cause for the increase on the price, we will forward the complaint to the regional office,” she added.

Price monitoring

Masillones said DTI conducted a weekly monitoring on the prices in the major markets under their jurisdiction.

She said the monitoring is conducted in the major markets in Misamis Oriental, including major stores surrounding public markets.

In the city, the DTI will also check retailers in public markets in Cogon, Carmen, Puerto, among others.

She added that its monitoring team also conducts price inspections in shops inside malls like Shopwise, Puregold, Rustans, and others.

However, she said convenience stores and sari-sari stores are beyond their jurisdiction.

“That’s for the convenience of the consumers, it is logical for those stores to increase their prices,” said Pabillore.

Noche Buena products

“There is no significant increase on Noche Buena products based on its market price monitoring results as of the last week of November,” said Pabillore.

“Since Noche Buena products are seasonal products, we compared the prices of the present with last year,” she added.

Based on the suggested retail prices (SRPs) provided by manufacturers, Pabillore said there were no price increase of Noche Buena products.

“In fact, there is a certain brand of pear-shaped ham that lowered its SRP from a year ago,” she said.

Also, based on the price monitoring report of DTI-Misamis Oriental, there were no significant increases on the prices of Noche Buena products as of December 12, 2013.

Based on the report, the prevailing price of a product was compared with its price a week ago and a year ago.

Published in the Sun.Star Cagayan de Oro newspaper on December 17, 2013.

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