A price freeze of basic commodities should be strictly imposed on typhoon-hit areas, Senator Kiko Pangilinan said on Tuesday.
“Gawin na natin ang lahat ng maaaring paraan upang mapagaan ang dinadala ng ating mga kababayan na matinding tinamaan ng bagyong Rolly,” he said.
“Dapat may price freeze sa lahat ng lugar na nasalanta. We also urge the local governments to consider declaring a state of calamity so that they are able to utilize additional funds, as well as to guard against inevitable price hikes due to higher demands for basic goods,” he added.
Under Republic Act 7581 or the Price Act of the Philippines, a price freeze can only take effect as soon as a State of Calamity is enforced, or if an area is declared under an emergency.
A price freeze, or automatic price control, ensures that the prices of basic necessities will be frozen at their prevailing prices.
At present, only Albay, Batangas, Oriental Mindoro, and Marinduque have an ongoing price freeze in response to their declarations of a State of Calamity following last week’s Typhoon Quinta.
Only Cavite thus far has declared a state of calamity following Typhoon Rolly.
“We also urge the Department of Trade and Industry to continuously monitor prices of basic commodities. We strongly warn against profiteers: Huwag tayong maging mapang-abuso. Panahon ngayon ng pagtutulungan, hindi ng panlalamang,” Pangilinan said.