Slow pace of economic edicts irk businessmen

Published by rudy Date posted on September 13, 2011

Impatience is starting to creep in among local businesses as they complain that the 15th Congress under the Aquino administration has so far passed into law only three economic reform bills.

Groups led by the Joint Foreign Chambers of Commerce (JFC) are complaining about the slow pace of the legislative mill under the current administration.

Listed by the group as already enacted were the Financial Rehabilitation and Insolvency Act that governs bankruptcies, the GOCC Governance Act that streamlined the otherwise huge compensations of executives among government corporations and the repeal of Nightwork Prohibition on Women which is an amendment to the Labor Code.

The group which includes the Philippine Exporters Confederation (Philexport) and the Makati Business Club (MBC) acknowledged that the legislative mill in the Philippines moves very slowly resulting in the filing and refilling of long overdue economic reforms in one Congress after another.

This is particularly true in a bicameral Congress where both the House of Representatives and the Senate must work independently on separate versions of any proposed law then reconcile their version after these are passed in both houses on third and final reading.

There is, however, some light at the end at end of the the legislative tunnel as far as the business community goes. Eight other bills are close to getting passed on third and final reading in both houses. These include the proposed law directly remitting to LGUs their 40 percent share on wealth taxes, the Customs Modernization Act, Data Piracy Act, Rationalization of Fiscal Incentives, acceptance by the country of the copyright and patent treaty, Lemon Law, Plastic Bag Regulation Act and liberalization of the professions. –Ayen Infante, Daily Tribune

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