Philippines to Import Poultry Products to Meet Demand

PHILIPPINES - The Bureau of Customs (BOC) is to allow the import of 8,000 tonnes of chicken and other poultry products.
calendar icon 20 November 2009
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Business Mirror of the Philippines reports that the BOC has allowed the importation of significant quantities of chicken and other poultry products starting later this month through January next year in order to solve the impending shortage issues in the market in the coming holidays.

BOC Commissioner, Napoleon Morales, said the first shipment of chicken goods will arrive on 30 November but it will not go beyond 31 January 2010. There will be 8,000 tonnes of poultry and poultry products to be imported during the said period in order to arrest the growing shortage of the product in the market, as demand is expected to rise during the Christmas season.

He added that the Department of Agriculture (DA) will be the one to issue the import permits and also to make sure that the domestic market is not flooded with the products.

"We will only have minimal revenue from this, maybe just in the hundreds of thousands of pesos," Mr Morales told reporters, adding that they will only get revenues from the Special Safeguard duty that will be imposed on all the imported products.

According to the letter of Agriculture Secretary, Arthur Yap, to BOC, poultry farmers faced production problems in the third quarter, worsened by the effects of typhoons Ondoy and Pepeng.

"We may experience tightness in the supply of poultry meat, resulting in an increase in poultry-meat prices in the domestic marketing the coming holiday season," Minister Yap said in his letter dated September 29.

He first asked for the importation of 5,000 tonnes but there will be an additional 3,000 tonnes after their estimates showed that the 'tightness of supply of poultry meat' will persist until early next year.

According to the conditions set by the DA, only Veterinary Quarantine Clearance (VQC) to Import issued from 15 October 2009 onward shall be allowed to import, provided that the shipments will arrive between 30 November 2009 and 31 January 2010. All of these shipments will be subjected to duties even if they arrive within the period.

"For Minimum Access Volume [MAV], licensees who will avail themselves of the special importation, their MAV allocations for the year 2009 must be fully utilized first before they are entitled to the privilege," Minister Yap said.

According to Business Mirror, United Broiler Raisers Association president, Gregorio San Diego Jr. in an earlier report said the loss in the poultry sector was not that extensive.

"[The government] told us that election-related spending will increase demand for poultry products. The problem is they could not quantify the demand," he said.

For the whole of 2009, he noted that broiler production could grow by five per cent – lower than the 15 per cent growth the industry projected at the start of the year.

Mr San Diego attributed this lower growth to the challenges faced by commercial and small poultry raisers, including the tight supply of day-old chicks.

In 2006, the government also lifted the restrictions of chicken importation and allowed the importation of about 5,000 tonnes of poultry meat after Typhoon Milenyo ravaged Metro Manila and parts of Luzon.

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