MANILA, Philippines — President Rodrigo Duterte has ordered that tariffs on pork imports be temporarily reduced to resolve the country’s undersupply of pork.
Duterte signed Executive Order No. 128 on Wednesday, lowering tariff rates on fresh, chilled, or frozen pork meat “to address the existing pork supply shortage, stabilize prices of pork meat, and minimize inflation rates.”
Under EO 128, the tariff rate on pork imports under quota or the minimum access volume (MAV) is reduced to 5 percent for the first three months of the order’s validity and to 10 percent for the fourth to 12 months of the order’s effectivity.
Meanwhile, the EO reduces the tariff rate on pork imports outside the MAV to 15 percent on the first three months of its effectivity and 20 percent for the fourth to 12th month of effectivity.
After the 12th month of effectivity, the tariff rate will be reverted to the current rate of 30 percent for in-quota imports and 40 percent for out-quota imports.
“The government recognizes the need to immediately address the current shortage in swine meat, and endeavors to strengthen food supply to ensure that Filipinos have equitable access to food, particularly meat,” the EO stated.
The President issued the EO amid opposition from agricultural groups concerned that it would hurt hog producers’ income.
READ: Groups buck planned tariff cut on pork imports
According to the groups, lowering tariffs would result in billions of pesos in lost government revenue that could be used to “improve local swine production.”
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