The Senate concurred voting 20-1-1 on the ratification of the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP), the world’s largest Free Trade Agreement (FTA) by far among Asia-Pacific nations, on 21 February 2023. The RCEP is a Free Trade Agreement (FTA) that aims to establish a modern, comprehensive, high-quality, and mutually beneficial economic partnership framework to liberalize and facilitate trade in goods and services. It will also create a liberal, facilitative, and competitive regional investment. Economists supported this, particularly the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) Secretary Arsenio Balisacan, who is optimistic that this FTA will fuel the Philippines’ economic growth.
Continue reading RCEP ratification foresees massive export and import growth
President Ferdinand R. Marcos, Jr. on his administration’s policy in right sizing bureaucracy, and on the recommendation of Sec. Benjamin Diokno ordered the abolishment of the DOF (Inter-Agency Tax Credit and Duty Drawback Center) OSS Center) and transfers the mandate to the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) and Bureau of Customs (BOC), to assure the orderly and expeditious processing of tax credits and duty drawbacks under various laws. Continue reading BIR mandated to handle DOF OSS on tax credit and duty drawback
Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) Governor Dr. Felipe M. Medalla reported in depth the topic “In Pursuit of Price Stability Challenges and Opportunities,” highlighting that the country’s gross domestic product (GDP) is expected to increase up to 6% amidst pent-up demand together with the target range of easing the inflation within the two to four percent by the end of the year 2023.
During his speech at the 2023 Philippine Economic Briefing, Gov. Medalla mentioned that the pent-up demand continues to drive growth amidst tighter monetary policy. However, he remains confident that the BSP will hit the target to reduce the inflation back to within the two to four percent target range by November or December despite the inflation of 8.7 percent in January. Continue reading BSP expects 6% GDP growth by the end of the year
President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. has approved the value-added tax refund program for tourists for implementation by 2024, which aims to attract more foreign visitors.
Tourism Services is included as a apriority sectors in the Philippine Export Development Plan (PEDP 2023-2028), and with the vat refund program approved and supported by the administration as proposed by the Private Sector Advisory Council (PSAC) will expec Continue reading Philippines’ VAT refund for Tourists expects to boost Tourism in 2024
The Department of Finance (DOF) and the Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT) signed the Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) on the full implementation of the TradeNet system. This is a significant way forward in onboarding all 73 Trade Regulatory Government Agencies (TRGAs).
The DOF is in charge of leading the collaboration and coordination within the TradeNet system. At the same time, the DICT is responsible for overseeing the technical maintenance of the TradeNet, as agreed during the ARTA meeting on 04 November 2023.
Continue reading DOF and DICT officially ink TradeNet agreement
The Private Sector Advisory Council (PSAC) linked strong partnerships with the government towards economic growth. Mr. Sabin Aboitiz – PSAC Lead Convenor and President and CEO of Aboitiz Group, laid out the country’s economic policy directions with the government. The PSAC focuses on six sectors, mainly on 1) Digitalization, 2) Basic Infrastructure, 3) Agriculture, 4) Healthcare, 5) Tourism, and 6) Jobs.
Mr. Aboitiz highlighted the advocacies envisioned under the Basic Infrastructure sector, i.e., streamlined processing of permits for telcos, the launch of the GoDigital Pilipinas (GDP), amendment on the Implementing Rules and Regulations for the Build-Operate-Transfer (BOT) Law, the creation of the Department of Water and the privatization of the operation and maintenance of airports. And for the Healthcare sector, PSAC aims for Philhealth’s digitalization, the ladderized program for nurses, the fully digitized FDA, and encouraged green lanes. Continue reading PSAC linked partnership with government towards economic growth
The International Trade Centre (ITC), in collaborative partnership with the DTI Board of Investments (BOI) and ARISE Plus Philippines, jointly synergized a Public-Private Dialogue (PPD) on ‘Innovating Industrial Policy in the Philippines. The initiative aims to explore and strengthen industrial policies as follows:
(a) Adopting a robust process/framework in the development, monitoring, and implementation of industrial policy in the Philippines; and
(b) Aligning trade and investment policies to facilitate digitalization and technological development to contribute to innovative, circular and sustainable, and resilient industries. Continue reading ITC Synergizes with BOI and ARISE Plus Philippines to strengthen Industrial policy
Technology undeniably benefits society. Mr. Anthony Patrick Chua, Philippines Lead Staff of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Business Advisory Council (ABAC), expounded on the topic entitled “Facilitating the digital led transformation in the Philippines’ – Opportunities and Challenges” which covers the following current legislative measures benefitting the Philippines and the region: (1) Public Service Act; (2) Foreign Investment Act; (3) Retail Trade Liberalization Act; and (4) E-Commerce Roadmap.
Continue reading Philippines Way Forward to Full Digitalization
The Anti-Red Tape Authority (ARTA) and the 8888 Citizens Complaint Center (CCC), under the auspices of the Office of the President, officially signed the Memorandum of Agreement (MOA), systemizing the public feedback mechanism on stakeholders’ complaints against unresponsive agencies and authorizing the 8888 CCC to file formal complaints against said unresponsive government institutions with ARTA to ensure prompt action and resolution.
Section 21 (e) of the Republic Act 11032, also known as the Ease of Doing Business and Efficient Government Service Delivery Act of 2018, states that “failing to provide government services within the allotted processing time is a violation that is punishable by a six-month suspension for a first offense and a dismissal and permanent disqualification from public service for a second”.
With that, ARTA shall provide errant agencies a warning notice, initiate an investigation, or file necessary proceedings with the Civil Service Commission (CSC), the Office of the Ombudsman, and other relevant courts.
The MOA signing was led by Executive Secretary and former Chief Justice Lucas Bersamin and ARTA Secretary Ernesto Perez, together with Senior Deputy Executive Secretary Hubert Guevarra, Strategic Action and Response Office (StaR) Undersecretary Rogelio Peig II, ARTA Undersecretary for Legal Geneses Abot, and 8888 CCC Director IV Bernadette B. Casinabe last 22 February 2023 at the Office of the Executive Secretary, Malacanan, Manila. AGPM