Blame the Nonchalant Philippine Government, AFTA would Gobble PH's Sugar Industry
DEATH FOR FILIPINO SACADAS.These dirt poor Filipino sugar cane "sacadas" would become jobless in the work they inherited from their ascendants. Thanks but no thanks to the incompetence of the Philippine government in not rendering assistance to the sugar industry. Starting January 1, 2015 cheap Thailand sugar will flood the Philippine market, thanks to the Southeast Asian Nations (Asean) Free Trade Agreement Filipino consumers will find more savings whenever they buy sugar at the expense of the sacadas.
By MORTZ C. ORTIGOZA
Its downside however is it would be a blow to the owners of the 28 sugar centrals in the Philippines that provide 700,000 Filipino jobs.
According to the Sugar Regulatory Administration, the country’s sugarcane industry has to be reinvigorated to be competitive. Private sector data show that other countries produce cheaper sugar, the cost of which is equivalent to even one-half the cost of our sugar.
Why? While the Philippines government ignored any assistance to buttress the sugar industry, Thailand, the No. 2 sugar producer in the world after Brazil, has galvanized its sugar millers to compete in the take-no-prisoner’s AFTA.
Thailand provides direct and indirect support for its sugar industry, such as supplemental payment to farmers, low interest loans at 2 percent per annum, fixed domestic prices, free irrigation services, and a well-developed and maintained transport infrastructure such as road networks and transloading ports,” according to Ma. Regina Bautista-Martin, administrator of the Sugar Regulatory Administration (SRA), who wrote “Pump-priming for a Stronger, Globally Competitive Sugarcane Industry: Through the Sugarcane Industry Development Fund”.
Martin cited that despite the contribution of P88 billion in the Philippine economy from the sale of raw sugar, refined sugar, bioethanol and molasses, tolling fees of refined sugar, value-added tax (VAT) on tolling and VAT from the sale of refined sugar, the sugar industry does not receive any funds from the Department of Agriculture, either for the construction of farm-to-mill roads, sugar warehouses, irrigation or water-impounding facilities, research and development or extension services.
If Thailand backs up its sugar industry, and other industries, why the Philippine government ignored this industry? Because of this governmental incompetence sugar workers would be gobbled by other countries in the regional laissez faire where tariff is pegged at 5% only.
Can you imagine if each of these workers has been feeding some mouths and after AFTA he finds himself jobless.
One of the most sought legal eagles in Pangasinan told me that the lawyers of the sacked Pangasinan Provincial Administrator Raffy Baraan and Provincial Housing and Urban Development Council Office chief’s Alvin Bigay are lightweight.
“Mahina, natangal sa puesto ang kliyente niya”.
Sabado, Disyembre 27, 2014
|Jueteng paraphernalia and bets|
“Tangal mo araw-araw ang 30% (P3 million) para sa mga panalo and tauhan (like cabo, cobradores, maintainers) ng palaro, tangal mo ang 20% (P2 million) para sa mga pulitiko sa national and local, para sa kapulisan, sa operator ng sugal meron siyang naiwan na P5 million daily”.
He quantified that P5 million (from a manipulated draw in a rattan made container being held thrice a day) in 30 days or one month would be a staggering P150 million or P1.8 billion a year.
“Puwedi na siyang magpatakbo ng gobernador?” I posed.
My source told me that funding a gubernatorial candidate is an understatement. “He can even fund a presidential bet!”
Now I know why the legality of Meridian Jai Alai is stranded at the Court of Appeals for several years already. Geeez, usually injunction case is resolved by months or a year! Why the procrastination at the C.A?
“Ano bang meron diyan sa Meridiane at hindi ma resolve-resolved ng C.A?” I asked.
I asked the top brass about the clamor of chiefs of police in Pangasinan why they have been ordered, through a memorandum, that they should not be taking their weekly share from Meridian.
“Umaangal sila, wala na daw silang pangpaka-in sa mga tauhan nila, and pang-gastos sa operation nila”.
He told me that it is not only Pangasinan but other provinces that are deprived of the S.O.P from the number game played like jueteng that is managed by controversial Gambling Boss Atong Ang.
“The same order too in other provinces, the police there were ordered not to accept their share,” he said.
He explained this happened because then Chief of the PNP Director General Alan Purisima suspected Atong Ang to be behind the bankrolling of demolition job where his mansion and a four-hectare property in Nueva Ecija, a multi-million peso official residence for the chief of Philippine National Police, and his 2013 model multi-million pesos Toyota Prado have been exposed in the media.
He said the police should not be smarting. The policy now is different to the time of former PNP Chief Ping Lacson where the cops were ordered not to accept bribes from jueteng operators at the same time police operatives in Camp Crame would sweep the gambling dens in the provinces at the expense of the chiefs of police who found themselves relieved and sued.