Foreign investments bill gets backing of foreign business groups

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Sep 11 2019 05:30 PM

MANILA - A bill seeking to amend the law governing foreign investments in the Philippines will attract more investors, a coalition of foreign business groups said Wednesday. 

The Joint Foreign Chambers (JFC) said it welcomes the House of Representatives' passage of the Foreign Investments Act (FIA), especially 2 of the provisions in the measure. 

JFC said it supports the removal of the practice of professions from coverage of foreign investments. 

The government has said that this provision is meant to attract foreign professionals to come to the country, and attract businesses requiring highly skilled professionals.

JFC said it also welcomes the reduction of the minimum required number of employees for foreign-owned businesses that have a minimum capital of $100,000. Under the bill, these businesses will only need to hire at least 15 employees, instead of 50 under the present law. 

"The passage of this FIA amendments bill will attract new investment and give smaller foreign investors a better opportunity to start a business in the Philippines, especially in creative industries and innovative enterprises," JFC said. 

The Joint Foreign Chambers is made up of American, Australian-New Zealand, Canadian, European, Japanese, Korean chambers and the Philippine Association of Multinational Companies Regional Headquarters Inc.

The Philippines lags its neighbors when it comes to foreign direct investments.

The FIA was last amended in 1996.