By Ernie Reyes
MANILA — By easing the restrictions and requirements for foreign businesses in the Philippines, Senator Win Gatchalian said the passage of the bill on foreign investment activities will help generate the needed jobs for Filipinos affected by the pandemic and accelerate the country’s economic recovery.
“This is a very timely measure as we’re now opening up the economy. With these amendments in the Foreign Investments Act of 1991, investors can look forward to a more supportive government policy and a more attractive investment destination,” Gatchalian, co-author of Senate Bill No. 1156, said.
Under the amended FIA, foreign professionals will now be encouraged to come to the country to share their knowledge, expertise, skills and technical know-how and allow Filipinos to broaden and enhance their competitiveness in both domestic and international labor markets.
“This transfer of knowledge and technology will, in turn, help the country attract more businesses that require high-skilled workers,” said Gatchalian.
“Kasunod ng unti-unti nating pagbangon mula sa pandemya, makakaasa tayo na lalawak pa ang merkado kapag naisabatas na ang panukalang ito. Kasunod niyan ay ang pagbubukas ng mas maraming trabaho para sa ating mga kababayan,” he added.
The ratified bill adopted Gatchalian’s proposal on the establishment of an online portal to serve as a central database, to include a directory of ready local partners from priority sectors as a tool for promoting investments and businesses matching in local supply chains.
Also introduced in the amended FIA is Gatchalian’s proposal allowing start-up and startup enablers endorsed by Lead host agencies pursuant to RA 11337 to be funded by foreigners with a minimum capital of P100,000 to encourage investments that will pioneer in the country.
“These amendments will hopefully lead to a foreign investment regime that is more fine-tuned to the changing economic climate and its accompanying demands. Our receptiveness to these changes may very well determine whether we can live up to our true economic potential or remain in the doldrums compared to our next-door neighbors,” he said. (ai/mtvn)