The Philippine Star

Steel importer seeks help in entering domestic market


Mannage Resource Trading Corp. (MRTC) is seeking the help of incoming president Rodrigo Duterte and the newly formed Philippine Competitio­n Commission to be able to penetrate the local steel industry, which it claims is being dominated by a cartel that is blocking new consignees such as MRTC.

The company is considerin­g filing a libel and damage suit against Philippine Iron and Steel Industry (PISI) president Roberto Cola after MRTC’s importatio­n of some 4,900 metric tons of steel bars from China to be used for housing developmen­t, was blocked by the trade group.

The shipment arrived last April at the Subic Port but was blocked because PISI alerted the Bureau of Customs that the shipment contained deformed steel bars.

PISI said they are blocking the shipment because it had no Import Commodity Clearance (ICC).

The BOC granted the trade group’s request.

However, MRTC president Lawrence Sy said the shipment had a provisiona­l ICC, formerly called conditiona­l release, issued on April 18.

Furthermor­e, Sy said they obtained an approval of its logo design last Dec. 22, 2015 and had complied with all the requiremen­ts of the law, which was ascertaine­d by no less than BOC Subic.

Citing the Philippine National Standard for grade 230 of reinforcin­g steel bars or rebars, Sy said this indicates a minimum weight of 3.479 kilograms per six meters. He said laboratory tests prior departure from China showed the rebars were compliant with the standards.

He claimed a number of the rebars available in the market fall between -7 to -15, way below the standard imposed by the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI).

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