The Manila Times | Biz chambers welcome Duterte’s call to pass priority bills

The Manila Times | Biz chambers welcome Duterte’s call to pass priority bills


By Anna Leah E. Gonzales | July 28, 2021



Foreign business chambers on Tuesday welcomed President Rodrigo Duterte‘s call for Congress to pass several priority bills.

“The ECCP (European Chamber of Commerce of the Philippines) welcomes the policy pronouncements of the administration in the SONA (State of the Nation Address) including the freedom of information, the establishment of the department of disaster resilience, and ease of doing business,” said ECCP President President Lars Wittig.

“We likewise support the emphasis placed on environmental protection, the upskilling of the workforce, continuity of quality education, as well as agriculture and infrastructure development,” Wittig added.

The group also expressed support to the government’s goal to expedite economic recovery and revitalization

The ECCP also called for the immediate passage of the amendments to the Public Services Act, Retail Trade Liberalization Act, and Foreign Investment Act.

“These measures are expected to significantly boost job creation, increase global competitiveness, and alleviate poverty,” said Wittig.

Wittig said ECCP also welcomed the passage and implementation of key legislation including the Corporate Recovery and Tax Incentives for Enterprises Act, the Ease of Doing Business Act, Universal Healthcare, Bayanihan I and II, and the Financial Institutions Strategic Transfer Act, among others.

“These will further improve the investment climate and business confidence in the Philippines. The ECCP likewise emphasizes the crucial role that strengthening the country’s public health system through the Universal Health Care Act plays in addressing the pandemic and future health crises,” said Wittig.

“For the remaining months of the current administration, the chamber continues to call for the creation of the Department of Water Resources, the speedy rollout of big-ticket infrastructure projects, the efficient vaccine rollout, as well as a level playing field for foreign and local businesses across industries,” he added.

Wittig said ECCP remains committed to closely working with the government to mitigate the spread of Covid-19 and advocate for key measures that will accelerate economic recovery and restore business confidence

British Chamber of Commerce of the Philippines (BCCP) Executive Director Chris Nelson meanwhile also expressed hope that the Congress will pass the amendments to the Retail Trade Liberalization Act (RTLA), Public Service Act (PSA), and the Foreign Investments Act (FIA).

“We are very pleased that the president mentioned the immediate passage of the three bills that we are advocating about which are the RTLA, PSA, and the FIA. Obviously that gives great impetus and we are hopeful that Congress which is now back in session will pass those bills within the next three months,” he told The Manila Times.

Nelson also cited the need to pass the e-governance act, noting that this would further boost the government’s move to streamline its services.

“We need to look at what the government could do in terms of e-government and how that could cut down the process. The more that we can put online, reducing the need for certain approvals is the way forward,” said Nelson.


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