DTI to manufacturers: Limit price hikes of Christmas goods to 10%

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, September 23) — The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) on Friday advised manufacturers of Noche Buena items for Christmas to raise the prices of their products by no more than 10%.

“Pakiusap pa rin natin sa mga manufacturers ng Christmas products kung pwede na maximum na nila yung 10% increase. Huwag na silang lalagpas dun para hindi mabigla ang mga mamimili,” said DTI Undersecretary Ruth Castelo in a public briefing.

[Translation: We are asking manufacturers of Christmas products that as much as possible the maximum price increase percentage they would impose is 10%. They should not go beyond that so as not to further burden the buyers.]

Castelo said the agency has noticed price increases in some items like ham, mayonnaise, and pasta. Although they don’t regulate the prices of these kinds of items, DTI said the price hikes should be minimal.

“Kung pwede nga sana minimal lang yung increases kasi we have seen na may mga produkto na medyo malalaki yung itinaas,” she said. “Kung ₱5- ₱7 siguro na pag-akyat ng presyo, okay lang. But kapag medyo malaki na, baka mahirapan na ang mga consumers bumili nito.”

[Translation: As much as possible, the increase in prices should only be minimal because we have seen products being sold way beyond their supposed cost.]

“Also, for competition purposes, hindi naman sila dapat sabay-sabay magtaas ng presyo kasi ang tendency ng consumers we gravitate towards products na hindi nagtaas ng presyo o maliit lang yung diperensya from before,” Castelo added.

[Translation: Also, for competition purposes, they should not be implementing price increase at the same time because consumers have the tendency to buy products with no price change or with little difference from the price before.]

Around 20 manufacturers have already notified DTI about their price increase, said Castelo.

The DTI earlier said it will release the suggested retail prices (SRP) of Noche Buena items by October or November.

The SRP of most Noche Buena products last year have remained unchanged or even dropped. Among them are ham, cheese, keso de bola, sandwich spread, mayonnaise, pasta noodles, spaghetti sauce, and tomato sauce.

The department also suggested shoppers to check promo bundles of some products to save money.