JFC urges urgent implementation of 3 economic laws

The Joint Foreign Chambers (JFC), which is composed of 7 foreign business groups in the Philippines, has urged for the issuance of implementing rules and regulations (IRR) for the immediate implementation of the three game changing economic reforms to ensure recovery of the domestic economy after the pandemic.

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These laws are the amendments to the Retail Trade Liberalization Act or RA 11595 (RTLA), Public Service Act or RA 11659 (PSA), and Foreign Investments Act or RA 11647 (FIA), which are all priority reforms of the Duterte Administration.

So far, the IRR on the RTLA was already issued after consultation with concerned stakeholders. The RTLA has lowered the investment hurdle for fully-owned retailers to enter into the country while the PSA and FIA have allowed full foreign ownership in certain economic sectors that were previously banned from majority foreign ownership.

“Consistent with the aim of Executive Order 166, which adopts the Economic Development Cluster's ten-point policy agenda for pandemic recovery, to speed up and sustain the country’s recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic, we call on relevant government agencies to ensure that the IRRs on RA 11659 and 11647 are also issued, with sufficient stakeholder consultation, before the end of the current administration,” said JFC in a statement.

JFC said that they share the current administration’s thrust to propel the country’s economic recovery post pandemic thru the enactment of game-changing economic liberalization laws. “Prompt issuance of IRRs for these laws would hasten the realization of gains expected from the passage of these liberalization laws, to the benefit of the public,” the JFC statement added.

Once the IRRs are issued, the foreign business groups said they strongly support for the full implementation of these new laws as the pledged their efforts to bring the reforms to the attention of appropriate firms in our member countries in the United States, Australia-New Zealand, Canada, Korea, Japan, and Europe and encourage these firms to invest in the Philippines.

“With its large, growing economy, we see the Philippines benefiting from the capital, technology, and greater competition these reforms will bring in the form of more jobs and better products and services more widely available to the Filipino people,” the JFC added.

Members of the JFC include American Chamber of Commerce of the Philippines, Australian-New Zealand Commerce of the Philippines, Canadian Chamber of Commerce of the Philippines,

European Chamber of Commerce of the Philippines, Japanese Chamber of Commerce & Industry of the Philippines, Korean Chamber of Commerce of the Philippines, and Philippine Association of Multinational Companies Regional Headquarters, Inc.