THE inventory of imported refined sugar at mid-October is about 20% higher than their year-earlier levels, a sugar planter’s representative on the Sugar Regulatory Administration (SRA) said.
Pablo Luis S. Azcona, a member of the SRA board, said the estimate for inventory levels is as of Oct. 16. He did not give specific volume estimates.
“The bottlers already have their sugar,” he said in a Viber message. “If we are 20% better than last year, and we had no complaints from bottlers in 2021, then I guess the ‘so-called’ shortage has been addressed and fixed.”
He said imports include the 150,000 metric tons of refined sugar shipped in under Sugar Order No. 2.
The order requires the imports to be divided equally between industrial users and consumers.
Albay Rep. Jose Ma. Clemente S. Salceda has that the government could lose about P2.5 billion a month in taxes on sweetened beverages if beverage companies are unable to obtain refined sugar.
Mr. Salceda said jobs, taxes and industry growth are on the line if industrial users are unable to secure their supply. — Kyanna Angela Bulan