M a n i l a
PRESIDENTIAL DECREE No. 553 September 11, 1974
AMENDING PRESIDENTIAL DECREE NO. 43 "PROVIDING FOR THE ACCELERATED DEVELOPMENT OF THE FISHERY INDUSTRY OF THE PHILIPPINES," TO PROVIDE EFFECTIVE MEANS TO INSURE THE SUPPLY OF FISH AND FISHERY/AQUATIC PRODUCTS AT REASONABLE PRICES
WHEREAS, the effect of the recent calamities which befell the country tended to raise the prices of the basic necessities of life including the price of fish and fishery/aquatic products;
WHEREAS, the price of fish, which is the major and cheapest source of protein in the diet of our people, has escalated to a level beyond the reach of the great mass of our people due to the destruction wrought upon fishponds, fishpens and fish nurseries by the recent typhoons and floods;
WHEREAS, unless measures are taken immediately and decisively to bring the price of fish fry and fingerlings to reasonable levels, the price of fish will continue to be high and beyond what our people can afford;
WHEREAS, the price of "bangus" fry and fingerlings have, recently and on several occasions in the past, risen to unreasonable level due to monopolistic and speculative practices of certain sectors of the industry;
WHEREAS, notwithstanding the high cost of "bangus" fry, the gatherers thereof have not received their just and proportionate share in the increment, because they have remained miserably paid for their labor the entire increment going, as it has always gone before, to the concessionaires and middlemen; and
WHEREAS, it is the declared policy of the Government in the New Society to spread the benefits accruing to any industry to all the sectors thereof to hasten the narrowing of the gap between the rich and the poor;
NOW, THEREFORE, I, FERDINAND E. MARCOS, President of the Philippines, by virtue of the powers vested in me by the Constitution, hereby amend Presidential Decree No. 43 by adding the following subparagraph to paragraph B, section 6 thereof:
"19. PRESCRIBE AND COLLECT FEES FOR THE ISSUANCE OF LICENSES OR PERMITS, WITH OR WITHOUT A DEFINITE AREA OF COVERAGE, GRANTING FISHERY PRIVILEGES SUCH AS CULTURING, CAPTURE OR GATHERING OF FISH OR FRY AND FINGERLINGS OR ANY SPECIE OF FISH, OR FISHERY/AQUATIC PRODUCTS: PROVIDED, THAT, WHEN DUE TO DESTRUCTION WROUGHT UPON FISHPONDS, FISHPENS OR FISH NURSERIES, BY TYPHOONS, FLOODS AND OTHER FORTUITOUS EVENTS, OR DUE TO SPECULATION, MONOPOLISTIC AND OTHER PERNICIOUS PRACTICES WHICH TEND TO CREATE AN ARTIFICIAL SHORTAGE OF FRY AND/OR FINGERLING, THE SUPPLY OF FISH AND FISHERY/AQUATIC PRODUCTS CAN REASONABLY BE EXPECTED TO FALL BELOW THE USUAL DEMAND THEREFOR AND THE PRICE THEREOF, TO INCREASE, THE SECRETARY, UPON THE RECOMMENDATION OF THE DIRECTOR, IS HEREBY AUTHORIZED TO FIX A FAIR AND REASONABLE PRICE FOR FRY AND FINGERLING OF ANY SPECIE OF FISH, AND, IN SO DOING AND WHEN NECESSARY, FIX DIFFERENT PRICE LEVELS FOR VARIOUS AREAS OR REGIONS TAKING INTO ACCOUNT SUCH VARIABLE FACTORS AS AVAILABILITY, ACCESSIBILITY TO TRANSPORTATION FACILITIES, PACKING AND CRATING: PROVIDED, FURTHER, THAT THE PRICE SO FIXED SHALL GUARANTEE THE GATHERERS OF FRY A JUST AND EQUITABLE RETURN FOR THEIR LABOR: PROVIDED, FINALLY, THAT ANY ADMINISTRATIVE ORDER OF SAID SECRETARY, FIXING SUCH PRICE SHALL TAKE EFFECT IMMEDIATELY, THE PROVISION OF ANY LAW TO THE CONTRARY NOTWITHSTANDING."
This Decree shall take effect upon its promulgation.
Done in the City of Manila, this 11th day of September, in the year of Our Lord, nineteen hundred and seventy-four.
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