DA urged to withdraw pork tariff cuts and better MAV proposals amid ‘tongpats’ scandal – Manila Bulletin


The Division of Agriculture (DA) was urged to withdraw its proposal to scale back tariffs on pork imports and enhance the minimal entry quantity (VAC) allocation whereas the investigation into the alleged “tongpats” is ongoing.

Samahang Industriya ng Agrikultura (SINAG) President Rosendo So stated on Thursday that the DA ought to withdraw its import proposals to appropriate the notion that the rationale for such a transfer is “to permit the bribe system to proceed to happen ”.

As a reminder, the DA, backed by financial managers, is pushing to decrease the tariff on pork imports from the present 30 p.c to negligible 5 p.c, whereas growing the MAS from 54,000 metric tonnes (MT) to 404,000 tonnes of meat. pork.

MAV refers back to the quantity of a selected agricultural product that may be imported at a decrease tariff, such because the Philippines’ dedication to the World Commerce Group (WTO).

The idea of the DA’s proposals is the dearth of pork provides because of the African swine fever (ASF) outbreaks, that are pushing meat costs up.

However Senator Panfilo Lacson denounced the so-called “tongpats”, which discuss with the Patong or a system of bribes that might happen on the DA relating to imports of pork and rooster.

In line with Lacson, there can be a fee for AD insiders of P 5 per kilogram (/ kg) to P 7 / kg of pork to be imported. This, he stated, had to this point given the perpetrators of the P2 scheme $ 6 billion in transplant cash.

On Wednesday, the Senate determined to kind a Committee of the Complete (CG) to analyze the matter.

Lacson stated an investigation involving all senators is critical due to the dimensions of the corruption concerned; hazard to meals safety within the Philippines the place imported pork might include the dreaded African swine flu (ASF); and a possible lack of authorities income.

He additionally stated union members would do a 20p / kg kill if the DA was allowed to import 404,000 tonnes of pork and the tariff was diminished.

When requested on Thursday whether or not the DA is contemplating withdrawing its aforementioned proposals, Dar solely instructed the Enterprise Bulletin: “The suggestions are already submitted.”

For her half, So says SINAG is about to file an official attraction to President Rodrigo Duterte, by way of Senator Cynthia Villar, to reject DA’s proposals.

“There was an amazing rejection from the agricultural sector of the DA’s proposals, the very company mandated to assist and shield us,” So added.

He additionally stated that the DA must be reminded that it was not an “import and anti-agriculture division”.

Kilusang Magbubukid ng Pilipinas (KMP), President Emeritus and former Land Reform Secretary Rafael Mariano, stated it was greatest for lawmakers to already “decisively reject DA’s suggestion to chop tariffs and enhance the allowance for imported meat ”.

“The large import will slowly however certainly kill the pork trade and severely have an effect on ties such because the corn and feed industries,” Mariano stated.

Relating to the “tongpats” scandal, he stated historical past had proven that import liberalization had not helped enhance native meals manufacturing and as an alternative had wreaked havoc on livelihoods and livelihoods. livelihoods of Filipino producers and shoppers.

Mariano additionally stated that “tariffs levied on imported agricultural merchandise must be reserved to assist home agriculture, however sadly unscrupulous importers revenue from bribes, technical smuggling and false declaration. of imports. “

The opposite day, DA established a particular committee to look at allegations of corruption within the issuance of meat import certificates beneath the Minimal Entry Quantity (MAV) program within the quota.

“Whereas we’re agency that issuing a quota-based MAV allowance is above the board and never discretionary, we’ve established a particular committee to look at allegations made by a legislator that there’s has a union inside AD engaged in a cost plan. Dar stated.

The committee is headed by the top of the authorized division of the division and can base its investigation on the preliminary findings of the DA-MAV secretariat.




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