The Philippine Maize Federation Inc. (Phil-Maize) to investigate on the alleged illegal corn imports of 165,000 metric tons (MT) shipped into the country.
“We call on our government to stop, apprehend and file legal charges to the culprits of the corn shipments entering into our country,” said Roger Navarro, PhilMaize president, adding that the Bureau of Plant Industries (BPI) admitted it did not issue any permits for these shipments.
Navarro said 6,000 MT were meant for shipment to General Santos; 20,000 MT for Cagayan De Oro; 50,000 MT for Bicol; 50,000 MT for Cebu; 30,000 MT for Iloilo; and 9,000 MT for Bicol.
PhilMaize was not clear if the imports have arrived and unloaded in private ports or are still in transit.
“These corn shipments will strike a fatal blow to corn farmers in the country who painstakingly harvested a huge 3.5 million MT wet season crop. Even with bountiful harvest, farmers were forced to sell at P9 per kilogram (kg.), an all-time low corn price that is lower from the P11.50 per kg. production cost due to the unabated and uncontrolled feedwheat importation,” Navarro further stated.