MANILA (UPDATED) — The price cap that President Ferdinand Marcos, Jr. set on two types of rice will take effect nationwide on Sept. 5, 2023 or on Tuesday next week, Malacañang said Friday.
Press Secretary Cheloy Garafil said the Office of the Executive Secretary "clarified that Executive Order No. 39... will take effect on September 5."
"OES Undersecretary Leonardo Roy Cervantes said that the price cap on rice will take effect immediately upon publication of EO No. 39 in national newspapers," added Garafil.
On Thursday, Marcos signed the order mandating a price ceiling for regular milled rice at P41 per kilo and well-milled rice at P45 per kilo to rein in the soaring prices of the Filipino staple
Trade Secretary Alfredo Pascual earlier said the order was immediately effective upon its publication in the Official Gazette, and the price cap must already be enforced in markets.
The trade chief also clarified that some premium rice varieties were not covered by the order, which only applies to regular-milled and well-milled types.
Pascual added his agency would mobilize price monitors and coordinate with the agriculture department and other agencies to strictly impose the price ceiling in markets. Violators will face penalties and even imprisonment, he said
“We recognize the urgency of addressing the escalating rice prices in the market. In parallel, it is imperative to maintain stringent oversight over rice pricing and supply to preclude any potential hoarding and price manipulation by traders and retailers,” he said.
The Federation of Filipino Chinese Chambers of Commerce & Industry, Inc. (FFCCCII) earlier said the order would "never work," adding that the prices are based on supply and demand.