Another potential bright spot for the economy is the amendment of the Philippines Public Service Act (PSA). Through this, lawmakers are paving the way for full foreign ownership in telecommunications, railways, airlines and airports, as the country courts an increase in foreign direct investment (FDI).
Aris Gulapa, founding partner of Gulapa Law Ofﬁce, says there are range of factors underpinning the bill.
Among these are political motivations. “The president of the Philippines has made it part of his legislative agenda before the expiration of his term to ensure that amendments to the Public Service Act and other laws that deal with foreign equity restrictions are completed by certifying these amendments as urgent,” Gulapa explains.
“Consequently, the lack of competition affects the quality of services provided to the public at large and stunts innovation because these oligopolies are not motivated to provide better quality services,” he notes.
For an overview of the legal developments in this area, see Ms. Beattie’s article Philippines Aims to Ease FDI Rules with New Bill published by Asia Legal Business.