Lib­er­al­i­sa­tion on the agenda

Southeast Asia Globe - - Agenda -

The Philip­pines will dra­mat­i­cally in­crease the num­ber of busi­ness sec­tors open to for­eign own­er­ship in or­der to com­pete with its neigh­bours, the coun­try’s eco­nomic plan­ning sec­re­tary Ernesto Per­nia said last month. “I want to be more ag­gres­sive and to be at par with other Asean coun­tries,” Per­nia told re­porters at a busi­ness fo­rum. Ev­ery two years, the Philip­pine gov­ern­ment is le­gally obliged to up­date the coun­try’s list of for­eign own­er­ship re­stric­tions. In 2015, then-Pres­i­dent Benigno Aquino III de­cided against mak­ing any rad­i­cal changes to the list, but Per­nia is push­ing for sweep­ing changes this year, which will likely be sup­ported by Pres­i­dent Ro­drigo Duterte, who has con­sis­tently stated his com­mitt­ment to lib­er­al­i­sa­tion.

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