Manila Representative Proposes Kadiwa-Style Market for Fuel Subsidies to Assist Low-Income Households

MANILA — In an innovative response to escalating oil prices, a lawmaker has introduced a proposal to implement the Kadiwa market system for distributing fuel subsidies aimed at supporting economically vulnerable groups.

According to Philippines News Agency, the plan involves the Department of Energy (DOE) and Department of Transportation (DOTr) forming partnerships with selected gasoline stations to provide discounted fuel to users such as motorcycle riders, motorcycle taxis, tricycles, and public utility jeepneys (PUJs). By adopting a system similar to the Kadiwa market, which allows consumers to purchase goods at reduced prices, the initiative seeks to make fuel more affordable for those hit hardest by price increases.

Chua suggested that the DOE and DOTr would determine which fuel stations could participate and set the discount rates in collaboration with the Department of Finance and the Department of Budget and Management. The discounts would be available at specific pumps and might be offered on a scheduled basis to manage costs effectively.

The proposal aims to broaden the scope of the existing targeted fuel subsidies, which currently cover only licensed PUJs and tricycles, by including additional low-income transport workers. Chua highlighted the potential for a pilot test in Manila and other selected cities to refine the program before a broader rollout.

This initiative is part of a larger effort to mitigate the impact of rising fuel costs, which includes the DOTr's Pantawid Pasada Program and the Department of Agriculture's subsidies for farmers and fishers, ensuring critical sectors remain supported during economic challenges.