Metro Manila, Philippines — The government aims to fulfill the promise of lowering rice prices to ₱20 per kilo “as soon as possible,” President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. said Thursday, but noted how some factors, including weather, have become an issue.

Marcos made the remark when asked about his administration’s timetable for the goal, one of the aspirations he floated during his presidential campaign.

“Lahat ng timetable ko, yesterday if not sooner. Lahat ‘yan, ASAP. We’ll see,” Marcos said in a chance interview with reporters in Camarines Sur.

“Kasi minamalas din tayo sa weather eh, kaya hindi mo matiyak kung ano ‘yung magiging production, ano ‘yung magiging supply,” he added. “We’ll keep working on it.”

[Translation: All of my timetable, it’s yesterday if not sooner. All of them, ASAP. We’ll see. Because we’ve been unlucky with the weather, we can’t tell the exact production and supply. We’ll keep working on it.]

Past and present government officials previously said that Marcos’ proposal may be difficult to achieve immediately amid current government funding issues and situations in the market.

Recent data from the Department of Agriculture (DA) showed the commodity sells in Metro Manila markets for ₱34 to ₱60 per kilo, depending on the kind.

Marcos earlier said he was still confident that the government can attain his dream.

He cited current reforms being undertaken by the DA, which he also heads.

“We have to convert the [department] into a ‘high-tech’ operation dahil that’s the only way ngayon to increase production. We have to bring the technology,” the chief executive said.

“Habang maganda ang sistema na ginagamit natin ay bababa ang presyo [As long as were are using a good system, the prices will also go down].”