AGRICULTURE Secretary Emmanuel F. Piñol said that the rebidding for unawarded lots in the first batch of rice imports will be conducted “right away” alongside the subsequent batches amounting to 500,000 metric tons.
“We will bid it right away. Pakistan put in a bid but filed the wrong paperwork. We will lump (the rebids) with the remaining 500,000 MT,” Mr. Piñol told reporters late Monday.
The NFA awarded only three rice import contracts last week accounting for 47,000 MT out of the 250,000 MT targeted for auction.
The initial plan was to bid out the 750,000 MT authorized for import this year, in three batches of 250,000 MT.
“I would prefer them to arrive all at once and then we can control the release to the market,” Mr. Piñol added. “It’s not important that we have too much rice, as long as we have no shortage.”
Meanwhile, Mr. Piñol said that the suggested retail price (SRP) for rice will be implemented starting Saturday, Oct. 27 as stakeholders requested a 3-day period to prepare revised signage in retail outlets.
The scheme will no longer recognize pricing by brand names such as “Mindoro Dinorado,” “Sinandomeng,” “Super Angelica,” “Yummy Rice” and “Double Diamond” and will simplify the classification system
The price for imported rice at 25% brokens will be capped at P39 per kilo while imported premium rice will sell for no more than P43. Philippine Rice classified as regular milled will be capped at P39, well-milled at P44 and premium rice at P47, according to Mr. Piñol.
“The SRP will initially cover Metro Manila and suburbs only, including cities and towns in the Greater Manila Area. The SRP for supermarkets and the regions will be discussed by the stakeholders next week,” Mr. Piñol said. — Reicelene Joy N. Ignacio