Marcos: Gov’t plans to 'revitalize' Phil. Sugar Corp.

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, May 17) — President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. on Wednesday said his administration intends to "revitalize" the Philippine Sugar Corporation (PhilSuCor), which former President Rodrigo Duterte ordered abolished in 2018.

After a consultative meeting with sugar industry stakeholders, the president said he wants to introduce changes to the PhilSuCor to improve assistance to farmers.

The state-run corporation was established in 1983 during the administration of Marcos' father, former President Ferdinand E. Marcos. It was created to finance the acquisition, rehabilitation, and expansion of sugar mills, refineries, and other related facilities in the country.

"It provides financing for farmers, especially for cooperatives and farmers' associations, 'yung mga tinatawag na 'block.' Ngayon hindi masyado silang nakakapagtrabaho dahil they tried to abolish the PhilSuCor," the president said in a video message.

[Translation: It provides financing for farmers, especially for cooperatives and farmers' associations, or what we call 'blocks.' Now, they were not able to function as much because they tried to abolish the PhilSuCor.]

Duterte had ordered the abolition of PhilSuCor upon the recommendation of the Governance Commission for GOCCs (GCG). The GCG cited the corporation's overlapping functions with the Sugar Regulatory Administration and with government financial institutions, and added it is "no longer effectively performing" its duties.

"Ngunit hindi na-abolish, nandiyan pa sila kaya’t bubuhayin natin at babaguhin natin," Marcos said. "Titignan natin kung ano 'yung mga pagbabago para makapag-adjust tayo dito sa sitwasyon natin."

[Translation: But it wasn't abolished, PhilSuCor is still there, and that's why we will revitalize and transform it. We will look into possible changes so we can adjust to our situation.]

Marcos also noted that another issue discussed during the meeting was the importation schedule for up to 150,000 more metric tons of sugar.

He added that they tackled ways to strengthen the local sugar industry and identified areas that could be categorized as sugar lands to increase acreage and production.