The one-time cash assistance sourced from the Department of Social Welfare and Development’s Sustainable Livelihood Program (DSWD-SLP) has reached more rice retailers and sari-sari store owners impacted by the implementation of the Executive Order No. 39 through another round of cash assistance distribution in all the six provinces in Region 6.
Over 1,200 qualified beneficiaries received the cash assistance amounting to 15,000 pesos each in various locations across the region on September 28, 2023.
This timely response to the presidential directives outlined in EO 39 was a collaborative effort of the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) VI along with other implementing national government agencies like the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD), Department of Agriculture (DA), the National Food Authority (NFA), the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG), and the Philippine National Police (PNP).
The DTI is in charge of collating the list of qualified beneficiaries which was used as the basis for the cash assistance.
Effective September 5, 2023, Executive Order No. 39 imposes price caps of PHP 41 per kilogram for regular milled rice (RMR) and PHP 45 per kilogram for well-milled rice (WMR).
One of the beneficiaries expressed his gratitude, saying, “Nagcomply po agad kami at salamat naman at nabigyan kami ng cash assistance para makatulong sa maliit naming negosyo.”
With small businesses and microenterprises bearing the brunt of the economic hardships resulting from the price cap on rice, the purpose of this cash assistance is to alleviate the losses incurred by retailers who had previously purchased rice at higher prices before the implementation of Executive Order No. 39.
“We want a win-win situation. We have observed commendable adherence of our rice retailers and sari-sari store owners in the implementation of EO 39 here in Region 6, but DTI will continue to monitor their compliance,” said DTI VI OIC-RD Ermelinda Pollentes.
Since the first round of payouts on September 13, more than 2,500 eligible beneficiaries have received financial assistance in Western Visayas.