THREAD: Presidential Spokesperson @attyharryroque holds a media briefing | LIVE

Tweets by our digital producers @gleefjalea, @bamba__g
Roque gives a recap of the government's 'whole-of-nation' approach to boost the hog industry and reduce pork prices
Agriculture Secretary William Dar and Trade Secretary Ramon Lopez are also present in today's briefing
Roque summarizes the government's simulation on the transportation of the first batch of vaccines via COVAX facility
Roque says the Philippines ranks 31 worldwide based on the total number of COVID-19 cases, citing data from Johns Hopkins University
Roque on COVID-19 cases: Despite the surge in cases in January, the upward trend has slowed down and is plateauing
Agriculture Secretary William Dar on pork supply: Meron tayong commitment sa iba't ibang probinsya, alam natin sa Metro Manila, 4,000 hogs are being slaughtered everyday. The commitment that we get from provinces, up to 5,000 ang pwedeng dalhin since yesterday
Agriculture Secretary Dar confirms the imposition of ₱235 per kilo wholesale price for pork traders
Agriculture Sec. Dar says they will also offer zero interest loan to market vendors affected by the price cap
Agriculture Sec. Dar: Every meat vendors association magbibigay kami ng ₱5 milyon
Agriculture Sec. Dar says they are giving hog raisers in Visayas and Mindanao who ship their supply to Metro Manila transport subsidy of ₱15 and ₱21 per kilo, respectively
Trade Secretary Ramon Lopez says setting a suggested retail price usually works for manufactured products, while for agricultural products, a price ceiling has to be imposed
DTI Sec. Lopez: As long as yung wholesaler ay magpapasa ng ₱235 [per kilo], kaya nilang sumunod sa ₱270 na price ceiling
Sinag chair Rosendo So gives a rundown on government efforts to bring down the retail price of meat products
Sinag chair: Kitang kita na malaki ang kita ng mga importers. Bago ang price ceiling, ang presyo sa grocery, nasa ₱350 to ₱400 ang frozen meat
Roque addresses issues of going on a Boracay trip after supposed COVID exposure to one of his staff: Maraming malisyosong nagsabi miski exposed, hindi totoo iyan. Kalokohan po iyan
Roque: Ako po ay nasa Iloilo at Boracay noong Friday, Saturday. Dumiretso ako upang mag-PCR [noong Monday], doon po lumabas na ako'y negative. In other words...yung trip po sa Visayas, wala pa akong exposure doon
Roque: Hindi ko po kasama sa Visayas yung staff ko na nag-positive [sa COVID]
Agriculture Secretary Dar: We are governed by good governance, no corruption. Walang suhol sa mga traders na naglalako. We would like to believe na maganda ang lahat ng dinidisenyo nating programa
Agriculture Sec. Dar says for 2021, projected pork supply is 1.229 million metric tons with a demand of 1.6 million MT.

Dar: Mayroon talagang kakulangan within the year so kailangan talagang supply augmentation
Agriculture Sec. Dar on increasing pork imports: May mga rekomendasyon kahapon na hindi lamang ang traders na mag-angkat. Itong panahon na ito ay bigyan din ng panahon ang may gustong [mag-angkat na] hog raisers
Roque says he will verify reports on the delayed release of financial assistance to health workers
Roque reasons that he did not violate IATF rules despite his recent trips: Hindi po, kasi I'm always in 100% compliance in all the rules. I always have a reason to go out, but I never violate the rules
Roque on achieving herd immunity: Tinitingnan na ang validation ng herd immunity is a year after the vaccination. We are still aiming for this, or even better as we target 100% vaccination of the adult population
DTI Sec. Lopez on quarantine rules: Kung kami ang tatanungin...we will make the proposal to deescalate, relax quarantine protocols. Ang pagpapaluwag is something we can consider even next month
DTI Sec. Lopez on relaxing community quarantine restrictions: It will regain much of the lost consumer confidence kasunod na ang business confidence. Mas magiging kampante ang mga tao na lumabas at lalakas rin ang business confidence
DTI Sec. Lopez: Basta ma-establish ang numero, we will really make the proposal to relax. It’s about time
Roque: Ang panawagan ng Presidente, ingat buhay para sa kabuhayan dahil importanteng masagip ang mga kababayaan na nagugutom dahil sa lockdown
DTI Sec. Lopez says PH is still far from going back to the pre-COVID economic situation
Will Duterte resort to Western vaccines given their availability?

Roque: This issue will have to be discussed by the President with his physician
Roque on CPP-NPA's suggestion to let PRC handle delivery and administration of vaccines instead of the military: We have a rollout plan. Iyon po ang masusunod kahit ano pa ang sabihin ng CPP-NPA
Can the government still prevent the chain of price increases?

DTI: The fact that we have competition in the playing field, mahahatak pababa ang mga presyo

DA: With our mobilization efforts, with the price ceiling, kung tayo'y tulung-tulong, we will overcome this situation
DTI Sec. Lopez says government agencies will be more proactive in monitoring alleged manipulation of prices of pork and other commodities

DTI Sec. Lopez: May mga text na dumarating sa atin na supposedly na nagma-manipula ng supply pero kailangan muna natin i-verify iyan
DTI Sec. Lopez: The problem is really the supply… pero once na nandyan na ang supply siguradong babalik lahat iyan tulad nung nangyari sa rice problem natin na humupa lahat ng presyo noong in-allow natin ang importation
DA Sec. Dar: May nakalaan na ₱600 million to restart the [hog] population. Hog raisers make up 65% of the industry, sila po ang nakatoka dito
DA Sec. Dar: Ang Bantay ASF program ay dapat paigtingin at mas lalo pang bigyan ng capacity ang LGUs
DA Sec. Dar: May ₱27 billion that can restart the whole hog industry na naka-toka sa commercial hog raisers
RELATED: The Department of Agriculture is planning to implement additional measures to stabilize pork prices and revive the hog industry
Roque says President Duterte will refer to the Ombudsman the alleged violation of ABS-CBN of the anti-graft law
DTI Sec. Lopez says govt studying imposition of price cap for imported pork: Ine-expect natin mas mababa iyan sa price ceiling na itinalaga
Roque: Hindi po alternatibo ang bakuna sa Mask, Hugas, Iwas. Magiging apat na po ang nasa ating plataporma kapag nagsimula na ang bakuna: Mask, Hugas, Iwas, Bakuna
DA Sec. Dar says MAV advisory council recommended to increase pork imports by 388,790 metric tons. Minimum access volume of pork imports is currently at 54,000 MT
DA Sec. Dar: Mayroon kaming referendum. May MAV management committee… to recommend to the President ito
Sinag chair: Kung hindi pa ma-implement ang pagtesting ng produkto ng pork na darating, baka magsampa na kami ng case, kasi binigyan namin si Secretary [Dar] na suriin ang imports na darating
Roque: Babangon din po tayo, matatapos ang ASF, matatapos ang COVID-19

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