Add'l discounts for seniors, PWDs start on Holy Week

CITY OF SAN FERNANDO --- The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) announced on Thursday that senior citizens and persons with disabilities (PWDs) will get additional discounts on basic goods starting this Holy Week.

In its website, the DTI said that it signed with the Department of Agriculture (DA) and Department of Energy (DOE) a joint administrative order (JAO) on March 21, 2024.

The JAO is expected to take effect upon its publication on Monday, March 25, 2024.

The orders revises the rules on granting special discounts to senior citizens and on the purchase of basic commodities, bringing the discount to P125 per week from the previous P65 per week, subject to review every five years.

The new purchase cap will be P2,500, which is almost 50 percent increase compared to the previous limit of P 1,300 per week set almost 14 years ago.

Covered goods under the new order are basic necessities and prime commodities or BNPCs.

Under the Price Act, BNPCs are defined as essential for consumers’ sustenance, especially during calamities or emergencies.

The JAO also specifies that the discount is for the exclusive use of senior citizens and PWDs, with no provision for carrying over any unused amount to the following weeks.

The right of senior citizens and PWDs to purchase their basic goods, through a representative, extend the discounts to online purchase and the rule against double discounts are reiterated and explained in the joint order .

Discounts under this JAO are separate from the 20 percent statutory discount granted under Republic Act No. 9994 or the Expanded Senior Citizens Act of 2010 and Republic Act No. 10754 or An Act Expanding the Benefits and Privileges of PWDs.

The joint order does not apply to registered Barangay Micro Business Establishments and cooperatives.

Basic necessities on the DTI’s watch include canned fish and other marine products, processed milk, coffee, laundry soap, detergent, candles, salt, bottled water, and locally manufactured instant noodles.

The DA covers rice, corn, cooking oil, fresh and dried marine products, fresh eggs, fresh pork, beef and poultry meat, fresh milk, fresh vegetables, root crops, sugar, and fresh fruits.

Meanwhile, the DOE covers household liquefied petroleum gas and kerosene.

The JAO ensures senior citizens' and PWDs' access to essential goods, the DTI said.


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