After the tragic eruption of the Taal volcano, thousands, if not millions of people in the Philippines became troubled and worried because of the shortage of face masks in the country. It was then solved because other countries who we are in alliance with helped.
A few weeks after the tragic incident, the widespread of the infamous Novel Coronavirus 2019 (nCoV 2019) made the demand of face masks even worse.
In the midst of the worldwide health emergency brought about by the Novel Corona Virus, people want to protect themselves at all times and in all ways they can.
Different news and rumors about the virus all over the internet truly terrified and alarmed people. This led to some advice from experts, informing people to be health conscious and hygienic at all times. No one can predict who, where, and when a person can be infected by the virus.
Higher prices of face masks
In Metro Manila as well as neighboring provinces, towns, and cities, different drugstores and vendors saw a price hike with their face masks. At first, this action was seen as immoral by the people even those who are seated in the government but now, the DTI seems to allow the selling of higher prices of face masks.
Yes, vendors and stores will be allowed to sell face masks or protective face masks at higher point prices. This update was mentioned by the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) Secretary Ramon Lopez.
Although the Health Department (DOH) said that not everyone is required to wear a face mask, many people who just want extreme caution still look at it the other way around.
You can read more about that here: Does Everyone Need a Face Mask? The DOH Says No
Timeline of the prices of faces masks
Before the concurring incidents happened, the suggested retail price (SRP) of the masks were at Php 1.00; now, some stores and vendors sell them for Php 8.00 per piece.
What’s even worse is that Lopez said that the ceiling price for the disposable surgical masks would increase and it can be raised to a staggering Php 16.00 per piece.
The cost of masks abroad has gone up because of the raw materials.”
DTI, being the authority in prices and fairness of goods and commodities, had to control the price of these protective gear to discipline opportunistic vendors who jacked up retail prices in the backwash of Taal Volcano’s eruption, in which several areas in Batangas, Cavite, Metro Manila and nearby provinces were affected.
Because of the unbelievable high demands, some retail stores and business establishments were allowed to sell face masks by tripling its prices; even more for the famous and the “secure” N95 masks.
The novel corona virus worldwide outbreak has reinvigorated the demand for the masks (Surgical or N95 masks). This is why most stores were getting out of stock as even overseas sources secure their local supplies.
No room for profit
Secretary Lopez said that some pharmacies and drugstores never even considered purchasing from local and direct suppliers of masks. Why? Because they were selling the masks at about Php 8.00 each. Because of this very reason, there’s no more room or chance for these businesses to yield profit under the current suggested retail price.
Lopez said that the higher prices of face masks will be allowed and that they’re assumed SRP would be within the P12.00 to P18.00 range.
Php 12.00 to Php 16.00 range will be our projected SRP – that, we might announce soon.”
Increase in mask production
With the news that the higher prices of face masks will be allowed, Department of Health (DOH) Undersecretary Eric Domingo, said that a local manufacturer that exports masks has pledged to increase production.
He said that this manufacturer will allot 500,000 masks on a weekly basis for the use of local and domestic.
Overall, Lopez said that the agricultural products that are harvested and used might also be subject to price capping. These, however, will be announced and spread by the Department of Agriculture (DA) instead.
What do you think about the allowance of selling higher prices for face masks? Do you think that this is just a fair scheme given the fact that the prices from imports increased? Do you really think that the surge in the raw materials for the production of face masks is legitimate?
For now, let’s wait and hope for the best especially with the DTI allowing higher price of face masks.
Source: CNN Philippines