The Sangguniang Panlalawigan created a technical working group that will monitor the movement of prices of fish and petroleum products, especially with the implementation of the new tax reform law called the Tax Reform, for Acceleration and Inclusion (TRAIN) law recently signed by President Rodrigo Duterte.
Gov. Edgar Chatto announced this during last Friday’s round of the weekly forum, Kita ug Ang Gobernador.
He said the TWG is part of the price monitoring council of the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI).
Chatto also announced that he would be calling the price monitoring council to a meeting this week where representatives from DTI, Department of Agriculture, Department of Health and DENR have been invited.
This is in response to reports that establishments in Tagbilaran City had already increased the prices of cigarettes, soft drinks, petroleum products, LPG and other products.
Meanwhile, prices of fish in Bohol increased by 300 percent since the Christmas season when the yearend typhoons took their turns in bad weather that prevented fishermen from venturing the sea.
The average prices of fish in public markets now reached the range of P200-P600 per kilo, especially in Tagbilaran City where the prices had been higher already compared to other areas of the province even prior to the bad weather.
Assistant Provincial Agriculturist Larry Pamugas confirmed that the fish price monitoring team of the province noted that the prices of fish started to increase in the advent of Typhoon Vinta, and went on with Tropical Depression Agaton.
Pamugas said Bohol has no buffer stock of fish that could have helped the province brace against these events when fishing is prevented.
It resulted to shortage of fish supply in the markets that prompted the vendors to increase the prices.
As a result, prices of fish tripled in different areas in Bohol.
Pamugas added that unlike Cebu, Bohol has no storage facility for fish buffer stock.
He noted that the prices of fish in Cebu might have increased during the Christmas season but it was not as high in Bohol.
Pamugas also explained that high prices of fish had been besetting Bohol already and the bad weather worsened the situation.
The Sangguniang Panlalawigan had been conducting series of investigations on the high prices of fish in Bohol, but the issue remains unresolved as there have been a number of factors to be addressed.