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Solon alarmed over price hike of basic goods, cars

By: Ben R. Rosario

The chairman of the House Committee on Ways and Means yesterday called on the Department of Trade and Industry to verify reports that prices of basic commodities and vehicles have increased as business anticipated the passage of the tax reform bill by Congress.

Rep. Dakila Carlo Cua (PDP-Laban) stressed that there remains no reason for producers of cars and basic commodities to increase prices of their products.

Cua vowed to push for a congressional inquiry into the issue.

Cua has authored the controversial tax reform bill that proposes to impose tax increases on vehicles and fuel products, among others, in a bid to raise funds that government will lose in implementing income tax reduction for individual taxpayers.

“I am receiving information that there’s already price increases not only on basic commodities but also on the prices of vehicles. What is the basis for the price increase? is it a new model? If it is a new model, definitely there is a basis but if not and there’s no additional excise tax, why would they hike car prices?” he asked.

He said the DTI must immediately act on the reports of price hikes if proven to be true.

“That’s a big issue that need to be investigated by the DTI and such unscrupulous practice must be curbed as it will affect our consumers,” Cua said.

The administration lawmaker stressed that government has not yet imposed any increase or additional taxes for vehicles and basic goods.

“There is still no enacted law on this matter. I am urging the DTI to closely monitor the prices of commodities, not just the basic ones, all commodities, because that’s their primary mandate as well to make sure that the prices of goods remain stable in the market,” he added