The issuance of Executive Order (EO) No. 41 of President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr. will be a boon to consumers, manufacturers, and truckers as it will significantly reduce the prices of consumer goods especially as the Christmas season approaches, an official of the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) said.
President Marcos, through the EO 41 issued last September 25, ordered the local government units (LGUs) to suspend the collection of “pass-through fees” to ensure the efficient movement of goods across regions aligned with the strategies to revitalize local industries under the Philippine Development Plan 2023-2028.
In a news forum in Quezon City on Saturday, DTI Undersecretary for Communications Kim D. Lokin said that EO 41 will promote ease of doing business, help local businesses lower the cost of doing business in the Philippines, and directly address consumers’ plight and sentiments to help lower the cost of goods.
“So that, at the end of the day, when the product reaches them, goods and even services mababa po, kahit papaano ay kaya pa po nila – affordable and kung hindi man po bumaba ay hindi naman po tataas,” Lokin said, thanking the President for issuing EO 41.
“In general, marami po ang natutuwa. I’m sure, hindi lang po iyong mga negosyante. At the end of the day, ang mga consumers po ay matutuwa dito lalo na po dahil malapit na ang Pasko.”
Rina Papa, the Vice President of the Alliance of Concerned Truck Owners and Organization (ACTOO), also expressed elation at the President’s issuance of the EO.
“Gusto kong sabihin, on behalf of the truckers, that this is the very first good news we have received quite so far, ang dami ng panahon na puro bad news ang nari-receive natin sa transportation. So, we’re very grateful din po (to DTI) for facilitating the issuance of this executive order,” Papa told the forum.
Asked about the additional cost to truckers imposed by local government units (LGUs) through pass-through fees, Papa cited the City of Manila’s imposition of road user’s taxes, which she said costs truckers from P2,000 to 2,500 per truck each month.
Multiplying that by 12 months for every truck, it will be almost P30,000 additional logistics cost to truckers, she said, noting that it’s a burden to truckers because the two major international ports are located in Manila.
“So, para po kaming captured audience, para po kaming forced to buy their travel permit. Apart from that also, the largest domestic port is also in Manila,” Papa explained.
“Hindi po ito parang, we are given a chance eh, kaya po napakalaking bagay na mawala ito. Other *local NGOs* impose on annual basis, some would impose P800, P675, varied po talaga.”
ACTOO, Papa said, hopes to be part of the technical working group in the development of the EO’s implementing rules and regulations (IRR), with the trucking association wanting to consider not only national roads but also the roads that lead to business centers, manufacturing sites and warehouses.
Papa said they expect that through the EO, LGUs would be able to take into consideration the general impact of imposing taxes, levies, and permits.
The distribution of goods would concern the national economy, and the entire country, she said adding this is not just about traffic or road use in one municipality or province, but also its implication on the entire nation. |*PND*