Senators reject sugar import liberalization

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At least four senators reiterated their opposition to the proposed deregulation of sugar imports, the Visayan Daily Star reported.

Senators Cynthia Villar, Juan Miguel Zubiri, Juan Edgardo Angara, and Joseph Victor Ejercito expressed their opposition during their visit in Negros Occidental last Friday.

The province is known as the “sugar bowl” of the Philippines.

Villar, Zubiri, Angara, and Ejercito were among the 10 senators who signed a Senate resolution urging the executive department to not pursue the planned liberalization of the sugar industry.

In the resolution, the senators said the move will adversely affect 84,000 farmers in 28 sugar producing provinces and 720,000 industry workers affecting almost a million families or five million individuals.

Rep. Alfredo Benitez (3rd district), meanwhile, said President Rodrigo Duterte was already aware of stand of the Visayan Bloc at the House of Representatives against the liberalization of sugar importation.