The “Buy Filipino” advocacy for locally-made construction materials gets a boost with the expression of support by the Federation of Philippine Industries (FPI), a staunch ally of domestic industries.
In recent published articles, the FPI has urged the government to recalibrate trade policies to help local industries and protect consumers from the entry of lower priced and substandard imports amid the COVID-19 pandemic. FPI Chairman Dr. Jesus Arranza said that, “now is the time to review trade laws to maximize the use of safeguard measures, anti-dumping law, countervailing law, among others in warding off imports that are dumped into the country.”
The Federation has also sent letters to both President Rodrigo Duterte and Trade Secretary Ramon Lopez to convey the concerns of local industries on the entry of dumped and substandard goods. He added that the Department of Trade and Industry’s “MagingBUYani -Buy Local, Go Lokal” campaign to encourage Filipino consumers to purchase fresh local produce and manufactured goods would greatly help in the recovery of domestic manufacturers hit hard by the pandemic. FPI for its part will relaunch the “Buy Pinoy, Buy Local” because all countries in the world are gravely affected by the Covid-19 Pandemic. There are less activities, less demand and therefore fear that this will worsen the influx of more imported goods, including substandard products, in the country because other nations will want to get a share of that dwindling global market.
Earlier, it was reported that Philippine construction materials manufacturers have banded together in expressing full support of the government’s prioritization of local products and construction materials for infrastructure and public works projects, as provided for in the recently signed Bayanihan to Recover as One Act or Bayanihan 2. Domestic-manufacturing firms that are part of this alliance include the Cement Manufacturers’ Association of the Philippines (CeMAP), Philippine Iron and Steel Institute (PISI), whose members include Puyat Steel Corporation (PSC) and Sonic Steel Industries Inc. (SSII), and Pioneer Float Glass Manufacturing Inc. (PFGMI).
The FPI is one of the major prime movers of the Philippine industries’ response to the challenges of the global economy. Among its priority goals are to develop globally-competitive industries and level the playing field in the country for domestic industries by ensuring that the Philippines’ globalization policy can be supported, including the provision of trade safety nets.