Duterte signs law amending Foreign Investments Act

Published March 4, 2022, 12:40 PM

by Argyll Cyrus Geducos

President Duterte has signed the measure that amends the country’s Foreign Investments Act, thereby easing rules on foreign businesses in the Philippines.

President Rodrigo Duterte (Malacañang file photo)

A copy of Republic Act (RA) No. 11647 showed that the President signed the amendments on March 2, 2022.

The new law allows qualified non-Philippine nationals to do business in the country or invest in a domestic enterprise up to 100 percent of its capital.

It likewise allows foreign investors to set up 100 percent ownership of all small- and medium-sized enterprises.

The Inter-Agency Investment Promotion Coordination Committee (IIPCC), meanwhile, is tasked to review foreign investments involving military-related industries, cyberinfrastructure, pipeline transportation, or other activities that may threaten the territorial integrity and the safety, security, and well-being of Filipinos when:

  • Made by foreign government-controlled or state-owned enterprise
  • Located in areas critical to national security

The IIPCC will be headed by the Trade Secretary and vice-chaired by the Secretary or an undersecretary of the Department of Finance.

In April last year, President Duterte urged Congress to fast-track the proposed amendments to the Foreign Investments Act as one way to open the economy to more foreign investors amid the Covid-19 pandemic.

Based on the newly signed measure, it is the policy of the State to attract, promote, and welcome productive investments from foreign individuals in activities that will significantly contribute to sustainable, inclusive, resilient, and innovative economic growth, productivity, global competitiveness, employment creation, technological advancement, and countrywide development.

“Foreign investments shall be encouraged in enterprises that significantly expand livelihood and employment opportunities for Filipinos; enhance the economic value of agricultural products; promote the welfare of Filipino consumers; expand the scope, quality, and volume of exports and their access to foreign markets; and/or transfer relevant technologies in agriculture, industry, and support services,” it said.