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Rice importer denies link to missing container vans

/ 02:30 AM October 04, 2011

This refers to the news article titled “Supermarket owner tied to ‘lost’ cargo containers.” (Inquirer, 9/15/11) To set the record straight, please allow me to make some clarifications:

1. I was not arrested in any raid as stated by Bureau of Customs intelligence chief, Simeon Caparroso Jr.

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2. Our company does not own any warehouse; it is only renting an office at Tomas Morato, Quezon City where Caparroso and his team visited us last Sept. 12, 2011.

3. We do not do any repacking of Golden Phoenix Thailand Rice Brand at our office; all of our importations are already in 5-kg, 10-kg and 25-kg packs when they arrive in the Philippines.

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4. We do not sell sugar, and neither do we repack sugar. Our product is only Golden Phoenix Rice, of which we are the sole importer and distributor in the Philippines.

5. All our importations of Golden Phoenix Rice from Thailand are properly documented, covered by the necessary import permit and BOC clearances.

6. Our company, Inter-Continental Grains International Trading Inc., is a small company that started only in April 2011. The volume of our importation is small and so is the space we use in a warehouse owned and operated by another company.

7. We do not own or operate the Uni-Nexus warehouse that was raided by the BOC, and there were only 42 5-kg packs, 45 10-kg packs (which amount to less than 14 50-kg packs) of Golden Phoenix Rice in that warehouse.

8. We deliver our product not only to Puregold but also to SM Supermarket, SM Hypermart, Shopwise and Rustan’s, and we even supply the rice requirement of the Thailand Embassy in Makati.

9. We do not personally know the owner of Puregold and so we are denying Caparroso’s  claim that we told him anything about the alleged order to change delivery dates.

10. We gave Caparroso copies of our import permit and BOC clearances with regard to our importation of Golden Phoenix Rice from Thailand when he and his team came to our office.

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We hope this letter clarifies the matter. It was unfair to link us to the missing container vans, the work of other people.

—CONRADO DL IBAÑEZ, president, Inter-Continental Grains, 265 JE Cortes Bldg., Tomas Morato Avenue cor. Scout Fernandez Street, QC

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TAGS: Customs, Rice Importation, Smuggling
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