DTI: No huge increase in prices of school supplies

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Thursday, June 5, 2014

AS students started going to school this week since classes have opened Monday, the Department of Trade and Industry’s (DTI) Price Monitoring Report shows that prices of school supplies only increased slightly compared to prices last year while most remained the same and some have decreased.

Pad Papers prices range from P5.50 to P14.00 while last year it was P5.95 to P14.50.

Mongol Pencils can be bought at P5.50, similar to last year. 80 – leave notebooks cost around P14.00.


Prices did not change although it was expected to increase this year once higher import duties will be imposed to newsprints because of the Trust International Paper Corporation’s (TIPCO) application for safeguard measures against importation of newsprint.

DTI Undersecretary Victorio Mario Dimagiba has assured in his statement last April that Gerry Lim, President of PHISPHANO, has said that they are not using newsprints as raw materials for notebooks and pad papers.

Almer Masillones, Chief of Consumer Welfare of DTI-MOR, says that they have not received any official communication from the head office regarding the matter.

“Generally, the prices of the school supplies in Cagayan de Oro are not affected. And whatever price adjustment, there should be a sanction from the office. So far, there has not been a huge increase since Mid – May where it is expected to rise given the demand, but based on the Suggested Retail Price (SRP), we are still within the range. The prevailing price is very close,” Masillones said.

“Our business sectors are mindful of the SRP that is released by DTI. We see to it that they receive a copy of the Suggested Retail Price so that they have a guide. The overall impression is that the prices of our school supplies are reasonable and affordable,” she added.

Masillones recommend parents to canvass and look into different stores to compare prices. This way, they will be able to plan their expenses and save.

Consumers flock to bookstores, malls

Even after the classes formally opened on Monday, parents and children still flock to malls and bookstores to do their last-minute shopping for school supplies.

The beginning of the school year comes with new purchases from people from all walks of life—the poor, the middle class and the rich—such as clothes, shoes, bags, gadgets and materials needed by students.
For Gemmalyn, a housewife and a mother of five, budgeting in June is always a challenge.

“We only depend on my husband’s salary and my sari-sari store at home. My children all go to school. And as much as I want to buy them nice things, I should be practical. I need to spend within our means,” she said.

Hope, a government employee, says the price of school supplies now are slightly affordable, but still, she stated the fact that the prices of school supplies when she was still in elementary are cheaper.

Malls and stores are expecting their stocks to be sold fast since sales are usually high during May to July.

So far, consumers have regularly purchased whether it is a weekend or weekday.

Stores also offer freebies and promos this shopping season. A 1,000.00 purchase in every branch of bookstore in the country guarantees a free pouch.

Published in the Sun.Star Cagayan de Oro newspaper on June 05, 2014.


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