BOC exec: Confiscated smuggled rice can be donated to NFA | Inquirer News

BOC exec: Confiscated smuggled rice can be donated to NFA

/ 05:50 PM March 15, 2018

Cynthia Villar

Senator Cynthia Villar. CATHY MIRANDA /

A Bureau of Customs (BOC) official has expressed willingness to donate tons of seized smuggled rice to the National Food Authority (NFA) as “short-term solution” to the agency’s dwindling stocks of affordable rice.

In previous Senate hearings, Senator Cynthia Villar, chair of the Senate agriculture and food committee, had already appealed to President Rodrigo Duterte to issue an executive order to donate to the NFA the confiscated smuggled rice “so we can sell a lot (to the public).”


BOC Deputy Commissioner Edward James Dy Buco said the Customs had seized 10 containers of smuggled rice in Subic, 40,000 bags in Zamboanga, and 32 containers of the staple in Cebu.


READ: Senator scolds NFA chief on rice buffer stock

At the resumption of the Senate inquiry on Thursday, Villar renewed her call to the BOC.

Buco answered: “Pwede pong wala nang bayad… Kami po ang gagawa ng deed of donation, all that NFA needs to do is to accept it.”
(No need to pay a fee. We are the one who will formulate a deed of donation.)

“During the meeting with Neda [National Economic and Development Authority] tinitignan din namin, since perishable ito, yung possibility if this can be sold through the NFA, but the proceeds will go to us [BOC],” he added.
(We are also looking into, since these are perishable goods, the possibility if this can be sold through the NFA, but the proceeds will go to the BOC.)

In an interview after the hearing, Villar lauded this “short-term solution.”

“Yun ang short-term solution yung mga nahuli na smuggled dalhin na lang sa NFA para meron silang NFA rice kasi iniinsist nya talagang di sila makabili,” she said.


(That is the short-term solution, those were seized will be brought to the NFA so they can have NFA rice because they are insisting they can’t any supply.)

“Anyway kami naman ang long term namin dito, we have to pass the bill on tariffication yun ang aming pinag-aanohan, how to do it well para di na mangyari ang mag problema na hinaharap natin ngayon we need to do a good tariffication bill,” the senator added.

The senator earlier grilled NFA officials present at the hearing for allegedly selling rice to traders and not being proactive in buying rice from local farmers despite the dwindling supply of government-subsidized rice in the country. /jpv

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READ: Villar blasts NFA for being inefficient in managing PH rice stocks

TAGS: BOC, NFA, rice, Villar

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