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Over the last few
years China has been one of the top steel-producing nation in the world.
Philippines is one of its benefactors due to the high demand of steels in the
country. However, reports showed that these imported steels were substandard. Local
industry groups were alarmed by the situation and this pushed the government to
impose stricter rules regarding with the importation of steels in the country.  The Makati Regional Court gave an order to
stop the release of imported steel products that have yet to be certified by
the BPS (Bureau of Products and Services), and a statement issued that the DTI
agency has exceeded its authority by giving clearances to the uncertified
shipments.

I strongly commend the
RTC in their decision to address the situation. Substandard steel does not only jeopardize the integrity of
structures but also endanger lives. The practice of importing substandard steel
and selling it locally should be stopped immediately. The government must act
on this now lest these products will be used in rebuilding the typhoon-ravaged
areas. On the other hand, the DTI department should be responsible for
the situation, how could they issue a clearance to the shipments when the steel
bars clearly looked deformed and substandard? Worse, smuggled inside the Subic
Port as it failed to pass through the proper channels. This just shows how poor
quality, such as China-made products, could easily enter the local market.

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However, the retailers, manufacturers and importers of these
uncertified and substandard steel bars should be punished for these violations because they are endangering the lives of
millions. Contractors should be wary of these companies from now on.
Unless they are aware that the materials they’ve been using do not meet the
standards and simply don’t care. In which case, they should be penalized as
well.

Everyone in the contraction
industry should work hand in hand in ensuring that better and safer structures
are being built. Hopefully, the devastation left by the past earthquakes are
enough to shake everyone up and leave a lesson against using these underweight
and substandard steel and other construction materials. They should boycott
these manufacturers caught making these products and the retailers selling
them. Having a set standard for these steel bars, and having everyone adhere to
these standards, would give us a better and safer Philippines.

 

             

 

 

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