Lopez urges Congress to pass economic measures to help further open economy

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Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) Secretary Ramon said he favors the further liberalization of the economy but not necessarily through constitutional amendments.

Lopez said DTI is committed to support moves to open up the economy and lift restrictions that hamper economic growth, including those on foreign ownership.

“If this could be done by passing some bills, not necessarily constitutional amendment, this is what we see as the easier way to move forward,” he said in a recent   Laging Handa public briefing.

Lopez said DTI has nothing against Charter change, particularly if it focuses only on economic provisions, boting, however, that lawmakers now have limited time to amend the Constitution before the start of the campaign and election period.

Earlier, the Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry (PCCI), the country’s largest business group, said discussing Charter change amid the pandemic is untimely.

Instead of pushing for a constitutional amendment, it said, lawmakers should pass pending bills that would also lift certain economic restrictions in the country.

Among others, the group was referring to the Corporate Recovery and Tax Incentives for Enterprises (CREATE) Act, the Government Financial Institutions Unified Initiatives to Distressed Enterprises for Economic Recovery (GUIDE) Act, and the Public Service Act.

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