2,258 small rice retailers get P33M in cash aid
MANILA, Philippines — More “micro rice retailers” adversely affected by price caps have been identified and verified, and have received their cash aid as Executive Order No. 39 remains in force for the third week, according to the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI).
Based on reports from DTI regional offices in Ilocos, Central Luzon, Davao, and Soccsksargen made public on Sept. 20, a total of 2,258 retailers received their P15,000 subsidy for a total of P33.87 million.
The most number of beneficiaries were in the Davao region with a total of 1,624 — including 470 in Davao City, 385 in Davao Oriental, 349 in Davao Occidental, 172 in Davao de Oro, 165 in Davao del Norte, and 83 in Davao del Sur.
In Central Luzon, there were a total of 336 micro retailers who received the subsidy through the Department of Social Welfare and Development’s Sustainable Livelihood Program.
Nueva Ecija had the highest number of payees with 107 beneficiaries, followed by Zambales with 78, and Aurora with 44. Meanwhile, Bataan had 38 payees, Bulacan with 29, Pampanga with 25, and Tarlac with 15 beneficiaries.
Leading the distribution were DTI-3 OIC Regional Director Brigida Pili and Department of Agriculture Regional Director Crispulo Bautista Jr., who emphasized the importance of empowering micro rice retailers and stabilizing their businesses in public markets.
“We aim for this payout to aid businesses, to prevent losses, and to sustain retailing businesses in public markets so that we can assist our consumers in purchasing affordable rice,” Pili said in a statement. “This comes at a time when we are anticipating the rice harvest in our municipalities and barangays.”
There were 127 rice retailers in Soccsksargen that received the cash aid. In the Ilocos region, 171 micro rice retailers received their cash aid.
According to the DTI guidelines, a single cash payout of P15,000 will be issued to rice retailers who sell regular milled and well-milled rice within the prescribed price ceiling — respectively, P41 per kilogram and P45 per kg.
To be eligible, retailers must hold a license from their local Business Permit and Licensing Office or possess a certification issued by the barangay or any government office.
They should also be registered with the DTI as sole proprietors, with the Cooperative Development Authority as cooperators, or with the Securities and Exchange Commission as partnerships or corporations.