Press Release
January 25, 2010


Consumers should refrain from engaging in panic buying and government must enforce a stricter and inflexible monitoring policy to address the worsening sugar crisis, Sen. Mar Roxas today said.

Roxas said that in his experience as secretary of the Department of Trade and Industry, prices go up further due to panic buying coupled with hoarding by abusive businessmen.

"Sisiguruhin kong mas magiging mas matindi ang pagbabantay ng gobyerno laban sa mga tusong negosyante na magtatago ng supply nila ng asukal. Pero ang pakiusap ko sa ating mga kapwa Pilipino ay maging mahinahon din at huwag mag-panic buying (I will make sure that government will impose an iron hand against scrupulous businessmen who hide away their sugar reserves. At the same time, I am also appealing to the public to be calm and not to engage in panic buying)," said the chairman of the Senate trade and commerce committee.

He said he would coordinate with the DTI on what steps it has taken to manage the sugar problem and discuss with trade officials what other measures could be taken to address the mess.

Roxas stressed government officials should have anticipated the situation following the escalation of the prices of basic commodities in the world market.

News reports indicate sugar prices have reached P60 per kilo over the weekend. An advisory from the Bureau of Agricultural Statistics (BAS), on the other hand, white sugar should only cost P52 per kilo and for brown sugar, P44 per kilo.

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