September 12, 2019
The Joint Foreign Chambers (JFC) on Wednesday welcomed the passage of amendments to the Foreign Investment Act (FIA) at the House of Representatives.
“The JFC welcomes third reading approval on September 9, 2019 of House Bill 300 making two amendments to the Foreign Investment Act of 1991,” JFC said in a statement.
One amendment removes the practice of professions from coverage of the law. “This ends the confusion in the Foreign Investment Negative List of professions with investment,” JFC said.
JFC said there are 45 laws for professions, each of which contains a reciprocity provision allowing qualified foreign professionals to practice in the Philippines so long as their home country allows Filipinos to do the same.
The second amendment reduces the requirement to employ 50 direct employees to 15 in order to invest the minimum capital of $100,000 in a domestic market firm.
“The passage of these FIA amendments bill will attract new investments and give smaller foreign investors a better opportunity to start a business in the Philippines, especially in creative industries and innovative enterprises,” JFC said.
“At the same time, it is not expected to compete with micro-small enterprises,” added JFC.
The JFC is a coalition of the American, Australian-New Zealand, Canadian, European, Japanese, and Korean chambers and the Philippine Association of Multinational Companies Regional Headquarters, Inc.
The group represents over 3,000 member companies engaged in more than $100 billion worth of trade and $30 billion worth of investments in the Philippines.
“The JFC supports and promotes open international trade, increased foreign investment, and improved conditions for business to benefit both the Philippines and the countries the JFC members represent,” said JFC.
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