NO PRICE freeze will be implemented by the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) for noche buena products amid Covid-19 pandemic.
DTI Assistant Secretary Asteria Caberte assured the public that the agency will be closely monitoring the prices of the food items.
To provide consumers with affordable Christmas items amid the pandemic, Caberte said the DTI is working on to push through with its mobile stores that sell noche buena items on discounted prices.
DTI 7 Consumer Protection Division chief Ines Cajegas said her office is waiting for the issuance of the new suggested retail price (SRP) for noche buena products from the DTI head office.
Cajegas said she is expecting the DTI head office to release the SRP for noche buena items within this week.
The DTI 7’s noche buena SRP monitoring will officially start after Nov. 2, she said.
In the past Christmas seasons, the usual noche buena products with SRP were ham, sandwich spread, mayonnaise, pasta, macaroni, tomato sauce, fruit cocktail, cream, cheese and queso de bola.
DTI Secretary Ramon Lopez said the agency will announce whether there will be a price increase on noche buena items as manufacturers had asked for an increase due to high production cost.
Meanwhile, retail players have been banking on the yuletide season to recover their losses caused by the decline of foot traffic inside their establishments.
Robert Go, spokesperson of the Philippine Retailers Association in Cebu, said the holidays are expected to usher in shoppers and stimulate consumer buying activity.
He said businesses in Cebu continue to be weighed down by low consumer spending due to the pandemic even if almost 80 percent of businesses have started to reopen under modified general community quarantine. (JOB)