In the wake of the recent increase in oil prices, the DTI has issued a warning to the public about commodity hoarding.
DUMAGUETE CITY — As fuel prices continue to rise, the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) in Negros Oriental has warned the people against stockpiling and panic-buying of basic and core commodities.
Despite adequate inventory accessible in the market, DTI-Negros Oriental province director Nimfa Virtucio told the Philippine News Agency that hoarding and panic-buying will create an artificial shortage of commodities.
Virtucio’s statement came as the Philippines faced yet another round of fuel price hikes on Tuesday, with gasoline up to PHP8 per liter and diesel up to PHP12 per liter.
“We expect basic and prime commodity prices to rise in the near future as a result of the fuel price increases,” she said. “However, grocery stores and other outlets are being checked right now to ensure they are sticking to the existing suggested retail pricing,” she added.
Manufacturers cannot simply raise prices without first receiving DTI clearance, she stressed.
“And, unlike fuel prices, if there is ever an increase in basic and prime commodities, it will not take impact immediately,” Virtucio said because factories have at least three months of stock inventory to use.
She stressed that the DTI’s jurisdiction is confined to essential necessities and prime commodities, with fuel and other products, such as those in the agriculture sector, being overseen by the local price coordinating councils in towns and cities.
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