FINANCE Secretary Carlos G. Dominguez III said he is
open to amending the restrictive economic provisions of the
1987 Constitution, as House
lawmakers began deliberations
on Charter change.
Planning Secretary Karl Kendrick T. Chua wants to further
open the Philippine economy,
but urges Congress to focus on
the urgent passage of priority
bills meant to attract more foreign investments.
“I’m for really opening up
the economy in all areas possible, with the exceptions of land
ownership because the issue of
land ownership is so emotional… so let’s do something doable,” Dominguez said.
Among the sectors that
should be further opened to
foreign investors are the retail
trade and construction industries, he said.
“There are many areas that
need to be opened. Opening
up the economy challenges the
local production and they respond positively if there is good
support. This is why I think we
should look at the Constitution
and open as much as possible,”
Mr. Dominguez said.
The House Committee
on Constitutional Amendments is set to open deliberations on the proposed Resolution of Both Houses (RBH)
No. 2, which seeks to amend
economic provisions of the
33-year-old Constitution in a
bid to attract more foreign investments.
Chua said lawmakers
should first prioritize pending
bills such as amendments to
the Public Service Act (PSA),
Retail Trade Liberalization
Act (RTL), and Foreign Investment Act (FIA).
“We have to prioritize the
PSA, RTL and FIA amendments as these are urgently
needed to help attract more
investments and create jobs,”
Mr. Chua said via Viber on
Budget Assistant Secretary
Rolando U. Toledo said that
the economic team is pushing
for the urgent passage of the
“These bills will help promote a more sustainable and
resilient external sector, whilst
increasing the inflow of foreign
investments and generating
more jobs for the Filipino people,” Toledo added.
The three bills have been
approved on third and final
reading at the House of Representatives.
Their counterpart measures in the Senate, however,
are still in various levels of
deliberations: with the bills
amending the PSA and FIA
still at the committee level
while the proposed changes
to the RTL are at the second