Malacañang said that the recommendation of the Department of Agriculture (DA) to increase the minimum amount of pork to be imported under the minimum access volume (MAV) is just awaiting the approval of President Duterte.
Presidential spokesman Harry Roque made the statement as the government deals with the shortage of the supply of pork in Metro Manila due to the African swine fever (ASF).
In his Thursday presser, Roque said that the resolution of the DA aims to increase the MAV for pork imports to 402,210 metric tons (MT) from this year’s 54,000 MT.
“Ngayon, nag-aantay sa lagda ng Presidente ang MAV na mas marami po (Now, we’re just waiting for President Duterte to sign the increased MAV allocation for pork),” he said.
MAV is the volume of the quantity of a specific agricultural commodity that may be imported with a lower tariff. It is part of the commitment of the Philippines to the World Trade Organization (WTO) to facilitate trade between countries.
The MAV is imposed on imported agricultural products to help countries whose economies rely on agriculture and to protect their agricultural workers.
President Duterte issued Executive Order (EO) No. 124 this month, setting the price ceiling for pork cuts of “kasim” and “pigue” was set at P270 per kilo, while that for “liempo” was P300.
The EO was issued earlier this month due to consumer complaints of rising prices of pork and chicken due to ASF.
On Wednesday, February 17, 2,000 hogs from South Cotabato arrived in Tondo, Manila for distribution to different markets in the Metropolis.
According to Roque, the government will continue sourcing pork from areas in the Philippines with no cases of ASF to ease the pork shortage.