THE Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) said the price increase of goods that it tracks is expected to rise 6% this year, easing from the 10% growth posted in 2023.
“There are 217 items in the suggested retail price (SRP) bulletin; out of the 217, only a small percentage or 29% or 63 items have price adjustments,” Assistant Trade Secretary for Consumer Protection Group Amanda F. Nograles told reporters.
“I think it is good to highlight that for 154 items in the SRP bulletin or 71%, there will be no price movements,” she added.
According to Ms. Nograles, the price increase for food products classified as basic necessities and prime commodities (BNPCs) will range from 25 centavos to P7.25.
“If we will compare the price adjustment for 2023 versus 2024, the average will be around 6% compared to 2022 versus 2023 which is more than 10%. So, that means that it is just a minimal increase,” she said.
The products that will be affected by the adjustments are canned sardines, processed milk, coffee, bread, instant noodles, bottled water, processed canned meat and canned beef, and condiments.
Meanwhile, non-food items that will be affected by the price adjustments are toilet soap, candles and batteries.
“If you look at the categories that will be affected by the notice of price adjustments, not all brands and variants in each category filed notice,” Ms. Nograles said.
“So, what is important to highlight is if there will be a price increase in one category, the consumers can still choose another brand or variant where prices did not move,” she added.
Out of the 63 stock keeping units (SKUs), prices for 59 items rose, two items will implement a weight reduction and a corresponding price increase, and two items a weight and price reduction.
“Our plan is around this month, we will start releasing the letter of concurrence and notice of approvals,” Ms. Nograles said. “But I think it is also important to note that even if those are released, the manufacturer will need some time to implement the price adjustments.”
“So, there will be some lag from the time that the DTI releases the notice of approval or letter of concurrence to the time that the actual price increases in the market are effective,” she added.
Trade Secretary Alfredo E. Pascual said that the department is optimistic that there will be fewer requests for price adjustments.
“Going forward, we are optimistic that the requests for price adjustment will be mitigated because the inflation rate has come down,” Mr. Pascual said.
Mr. Pascual said that manufacturers cited the increasing cost of packaging materials and logistics as reasons for seeking price adjustments.
The DTI last released an updated SRP bulletin in February 2023 and only released one last year, compared with the three times in 2022.
“That is an indication of our efforts, as much as possible, in mitigating the price increase of the BNPCs,” Ms. Nograles said.
“Hopefully by the first quarter of 2024 we will update the SRP bulletin to reflect all of the adjustments this year,” she added. — Justine Irish D. Tabile