The Philippine Competition Commission (PCC) is set to probe “anticompetitive” sectors in the manufacturing industry, specifically those that have a high impact on consumers.
On the sidelines of a public forum, PCC Chair Arsenio Balisacan told reporters that the antitrust body would look into a study that listed priority sectors most exposed to anticompetitive behavior. The study was led by Erlinda Medalla, a renowned research fellow at the Philippine Institute for Development Studies (PIDS).
These sectors include those that produce: refined petroleum products, fertilizers and nitrogen compounds, milk-based infant and dietetic food, dairy products, agricultural and forestry machinery, pens and pencils, sports and energy drinks, refractory ceramic products, power-driven hand tools, cement and sugar.
The list also included the cement sector, which has been under PCC investigation since January last year.
In listing these high-risk manufacturing sectors, Medalla considered, among other factors, market concentration and high price cost margins.
Balisacan, however, said that the list still needed to be vetted using other considerations, particularly their impact on consumers and a probe’s “probability of success.”
He said the list would just help PCC in knowing which sectors to prioritize, since the commission has “very limited resources.”
“We’ll have to bring in other data to supplement data we’ve seen here,” he told reporters.
“If this sector has high probability [of] anticompetitive practices, the next question you ask is how important is that [sector] to consumers [and] to the overall economy,” he said.