PHILIPPINES: SRA says sugar prices higher after VAT applied to sugar
Published: 05/07/2015, 4:23:58 PM
The Sugar Regulatory Administration (SRA) noted an increase in the price of sugar after the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) imposed value added tax (VAT) on raw sugar, according to the Philippines' ABS CBN News.
Based on SRA's monitoring for May, the lowest price of raw sugar is now at PHP40 (US$0.89), from a previous low of PHP30 in April.
The lowest price for washed sugar is PHP43 from PHP41, while lowest price for refined sugar is now PHP48 from PHP47.
However, the prevailing prices did not change much, which resulted in a very minimal increase in average prices.
SRA is coordinating with the Department of Agriculture and Department of Trade and Industry to help them police markets and remind retailers that there should be no increase in prices just yet.
Although there is also an increase in demand due to the summer season and there was also an unexpected drop in production output due to El Niño, SRA believes majority of the sugar being sold right now was produced even before the VAT was imposed.
An SRA official told ABS-CBN also that President Aquino ordered SRA to help BIR identify the types of raw sugar that may and may not be taxed.
Bakers, meanwhile, assured the slight increase in sugar prices is not enough to push bread prices up.
In fact, they are studying the possibility of dropping Pinoy Tasty prices due to a cheaper variety of flour that they can use.
In a text message, Philbaking President Nestor Constancia said they are still in the process of testing the flour this week and gathering feedback from members.
Meanwhile, the DTI is convinced that at PHP690 per sack of flour, bakers can roll back the price of Pinoy Tasty by PHP1.
According to DTI Undersecretary Vic Dimagiba, they will make sure that the rollback is implemented before the opening of classes in June.