Passage of key economic bills eyed

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By Manila Bulletin

The Philippine Exporters Confederation Inc. (Philexport) is pushing Congress to pass pending critical economic and trade-related bills essential to promote growth and support the country’s continued recovery from the pandemic as they institute reforms to achieve export goals set in the new export development plan.

Philexport President Sergio Ortiz-Luis Jr. identified some of these measures as the Magna Carta for MSMEs (micro, small and medium enterprises), the Philippine Ports Authority Charter or the PhilPorts Act, the International Maritime Competitiveness Act, the Open Access in Data Transmission Act, the Customs Amnesty Act, and reforms in the Act for Salt Iodization Nationwide (ASIN).

The Magna Carta for MSMEs seeks to develop and nurture the Filipino entrepreneurial spirit, while the amendments to the ASIN Law aim to rationalize the policy, facilitate the revival of the local industry and expand food exports.

“We could not emphasize more the importance of getting these reforms passed as part of the conditions within which export growth and targets under the Philippine Export Development Plan (PEDP) are connected,” Ortiz-Luis said during the group’s general membership meeting on Friday.

Apart from the passage of these pending economic and trade-related bills, Ortiz-Luis said industry players are taking a more aggressive stance inspired by the newly launched PEDP and the recovery in the export performance.

“If all the reform elements in the PEDP are achieved, we are seeing export earnings of $240.5 billion for 2028, more than double this year’s target of $112 billion,” he said.

He added 88.5 percent of the export earnings are accounted for by prominent export sectors such as electronics; agriculture; transport; home furnishings; wearables, fashion accessories and travel goods; minerals; information technology-business process management; and chemicals.

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