‘It’s anti-poor’: Lawyer asks for review of DTI technical regulation on steel roofing materials

Published March 8, 2021, 11:00 AM

by Ellson Quismorio

A lawyer-broadcaster has called on the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) and Bureau of Philippine Standards (BPS) to review a Department Administrative Order (DAO) mandating the product certification of raw materials used for roofing and general applications.

(PIXABAY / FILE PHOTO)

According to lawyer Trixie Cruz-Angeles, DTI DAO 10-20 Series of 2020 is “anti-poor and anti-development.”

Angeles also described the new technical regulation as “crippling and disadvantageous to general purpose and non-roofing sheets users and importers.”

“It seems BPS/DTI did not carefully study the impact the DAO 10-20 would bring to certain segments of the steel industry, and just issued it blindly without holding a public consultation to know the sentiment of these segments,” she said.

DAO 10-20, which mandates the certification of hot-dipped metallic-coated and pre-painted galvanized steel coils and sheets for roofing and general applications, took effect on January 13, 2021.

The order generally covers all spectrum of the steel industry, even those industry segment that does not require the specific thickness of steel coil materials in their operations and business areas.

“It is anti-poor and only favors big steel industry players who have deep pockets and can afford to shoulder the additional costs,” Angeles noted.

In formulating the DAO, the BPS and DTI overlooked the current situation for general purpose applications of zinc coated galvanized sheets, the lawyer said.

Non-roofing users import about 15 different thicknesses and about five different kinds of similar coatings (Galvaneal, Electrolytic galvanized (EG), Galvanize, Galvalume, Galvfan, Galvanize and ZAM (magnesium -new technology) for different kinds of non-roofing end users.

These non-roofing users represent industries that include the automotive, non-roofing construction, electrical, electronics, semiconductor, farm and agricultural, ice plant and storage, fisheries, poultry and hogs raisers, machineries, and others.

“Many of these sectors were not properly consulted,” she claimed.

Angeles said that while these non-roofing users were exempted from the order, BPS and DTI are still requiring them to file permit and documents–a laborious procedure that takes 16 hours to complete for every shipment.

It is also costly, cumbersome, and requires pre-shipment inspection, she said.

Angeles asked the two agencies to “reconvene a transparent public hearing and institute a reconvening of the technical committee with technical experts from all sectors that are affected by this directive.”

“They should be transparent and fair in executing policies that are favorable to the consuming public, including small home owners constructing their dream houses who will be economically affected by the new DAO under the prevailing pandemic condition of the country,” she added.

 
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