Customs official claims ukay-ukay business illegal, but are still given City permits

Bureau of Customs calls for strict monitoring on ukay-ukay business

The Bureau of Customs office in Palawan has raised their concern over the fast growing ‘ukay ukay’ industry in Puerto Princesa, stating that ukay ukay should limit their operation within the city.

Alpha Grace Castro, Collector of Customs said that ‘ukay ukay’ needs to be strictly monitored, saying that it is illegal and are posing health risks to the public.

“Ang laki ng industry ng ukay-ukay dito, pero illegal ‘yan at bawal ‘yan. Nakakapagtaka lang kung bakit sila dumadami,” Castro said.

She said that as of now, only several ‘ukay ukay packages’ go through the Bureau of Customs and that most ‘ukay ukay packages’ might have their shipments sourced locally.

“Nanggaling sila ng ibang bansa, and yet, nagtataka tayo kung paano sila dumadami. Hindi rin natin minsan alam kung saan sila nanggagaling, kung galing sila sa ibang bansa kasi unang una, wala tayong direct flight galing ibang bansa, maliban sa isang flight natin directed to Taipei,” she said.

Castro said that the ‘ukay ukay’ in Puerto Princesa continue to grow because of the issuance of permits and licenses. She added that when the ‘ukay ukay’ items are already displayed, they are no longer the agency responsibe.

 “Bakit ba sila dumadami? Kasi binibigyan sila ng permit ng city, may lisensya sila,” Castro said.

She urged authorities monitor the ukay ukay business for possible negative health impacts.

“Sana i-monitor rin maayos ng agencies natin kung saan nanggagaling ang ukay ukay dito,” said Castro.

 Maria Theresa Vicente of the Business Permit and Licensing- Regulatory Enforcement and Monitoring (BPL-REM) said that they are having an ocular inspection with the ‘ukay ukay’ stalls within the city, to ensure that ‘ukay ukay’ stalls and stores have permits.


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