Experts in agriculture: DA Secretary William D. Dar and PCC Chairman Arsenio M. Balisacan sign a partnership in applying competition lens in agricultural markets.
1 October 2019
Competition lens eyed in agri sector as PCC, DA pledge cooperation

The Philippine Competition Commission (PCC) and the Department of Agriculture (DA) have sealed a partnership for strengthened coordination and mutual advisory assistance on competition concerns given the agriculture sector’s primary importance to consumer welfare and inclusive development.

Earlier today, the PCC inked a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) with the DA in a ceremony led by their respective heads, PCC Chairman Arsenio M. Balisacan and DA Secretary William D. Dar.

“This has been a much-anticipated partnership that puts the PCC and the DA at the forefront of inclusive development and consumer welfare promotion. Cognizant of the DA’s role in developing our agriculture sector and the sector’s importance in the economy, the PCC is well-suited to assist and support the DA by looking into market conduct that ultimately affect prices and output,” said Chairman Balisacan.

“We are pleased to count Secretary Dar as a partner allowing this crucial economic sector to be injected with competition lens toward advancing welfare and attaining a sharper handle in prohibiting unscrupulous practices in agricultural markets,” added Chairman Balisacan.

The MOA facilitates information and knowledge-exchange between the two agencies for matters, issues or concerns involving competition in the agriculture sector. Enabling wider access to information and cooperation, one agency is able to inform and guide the other in issues that fall within its respective field.

Apart from information exchange, other forms of cooperation that may be pursued by the PCC and DA under the MOA include investigative and enforcement support,  and creation of fact-finding bodies for inquiries into the sector.

The collaboration of PCC and DA’s top brass brings together two recognized experts in agriculture, poverty reduction, and policy-making to create a fair and level playing field in the sector for the benefit of both farmers and consumers.

“At the center of this partnership is the active contribution of know-how and expertise, with both agencies charged with the common responsibility of addressing critical constraints to poverty reduction and growth in the agriculture sector, including market conduct harmful to either consumers or farmers, or both,” Chairman Balisacan said.

The partnership marks PCC’s 16th MOA signed to date, as the agency expands its network of government partnerships toward fostering a culture of competition.