The Philippine Chamber of Agriculture and Food Inc. (PCAFI) on Wednesday called on the government to immediately implement measures to mitigate the decline in the fisheries sector, urging the review of current regulations as well as the establishment of a database of crucial agricultural statistics.
PCAFI noted that while the Philippines saw a 7.6-percent growth in its gross domestic product, the fisheries sector suffered the worst among key industries with a contraction of 5 percent.
Among the most notable reforms the PCAFI is pushing for is the review of the delineation policy between commercial waters and municipal waters, citing that fishermen stakeholders find compliance with these rules difficult.
PCAFI also noted that the price ceilings set by relevant government agencies are damaging market demand and supply chain behavior and trends.
"Experiencing continued losses will force canning factories to withdraw their products from the shelves in areas where prices were fixed below cost, resulting in the drop in supply and further increasing prices for the consumers," PCAFI president Danny Fausto said in a statement.
The group also reiterated the need for the immediate establishment of a reliable and real time data information system as provided for in the Agriculture and Fisheries Modernization Act.
PCAFI said the data info system will help determine real, updated information on demand, supply, imports and exports, and prices.
—Alden M. Monzon
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