SRA preparing to meet US export quota

THE Sugar Regulatory Administration (SRA) said it is undertaking the initial preparations to help the industry meet the US raw sugar export quota.

“Right now, there is a push from the (Private Sector Advisory Council) and from the refiners and millers, and also exporters, to meet the 24,700 metric tons (MT) quota,” SRA Administrator Pablo Luis S. Azcona said in a briefing.

He added that the regulator is readying the initial paperwork to allow the export of sugar, with an initial shipment targeted for June.

“Our exporters have pre-qualified for the program because they participated in Sugar Order No. 2. These will be the same people who will be involved in the export program if it happens,” Mr. Azcona added.

Sugar Order No. 2 called for the voluntary purchase of domestically produced sugar in order to stabilize farmgate prices. Participants were eligible to avail of an allocation for a future import program.

The Philippines last shipped raw sugar to the US market during the crop year 2020-2021, amounting to 112,008 MT of commercial weight raw sugar. 

The Philippines has not exported sugar to the US since, due to domestic supply concerns.

During the 2023-2024 crop year, raw sugar production hit 1.92 million MT as of May 5.

The US granted the Philippines an additional export quota of 25,300 metric tons raw value (MTRV) of raw sugar, on top of the 145,235 MTRV quota for the year.

Mr. Azcona said earlier that millers and traders were volunteering to export 30,000 or 60,000 MT of raw sugar to the US.

Last week, PSAC’s agriculture group had also recommended importing raw sugar and refining it for export.

“If we ship to other countries who accept refined sugar and they don’t specify where the raw sugar comes from, it’s possible,” Mr. Azcona added. — Adrian H. Halili