Gov’t sets P5B for direct purchase of sugar, UNIFED thanks Marcos

UNIFED president Manuel Lamata (right) thanks President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. for heeding his plea for government intervention.*

President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. has “approved an initial budget of P5 billion for government to directly purchase sugar from farmers at a premium price,” Manuel Lamata, United Sugar Producers Federation of the Philippines president, said Sunday, January 21.

“We are very grateful to the president, Agriculture Secretary Francisco Tiu Laurel Jr., and Sugar Regulatory Administrator Pablo Azcona for heeding our plea for government intervention on the plummeting sugar millgate prices,” Lamata said.

“We are suggesting that government starts buying millgate raw sugar at P2,800 per LKg”, Lamata said.

The current millgate prices are at P2,400 to P2,500 per LKg, he said.

The mechanics are being set up and hopefully gov’t can start buying in the first week of February Lamata said.

UNIFED took part in the discussion of the mechanics for the implementation of the direct buying at the Department of Agriculture on Friday, January 19, he said.

It was UNIFED, through Lamata, that first issued the appeal to the president for help on December 11 amidst the continuous drop in sugar prices since the start of the milling season.

Lamata thanked the members of UNIFED who never wavered in their trust in the present administration.

“UNIFED will always look after the welfare of its members and the industry as a whole,” he said.*

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