MANILA, PHILIPPINES — Duterte signed a law amending the Public Service Act on Monday, March 21, allowing foreigners to acquire 100% of corporations in the telecommunications, shipping, airline, railway, toll road, and transportation network vehicle industries. Previously, because these businesses were deemed public utilities, foreign equity was restricted to a maximum of 40%.
In the participation of legislators and other authorities, Duterte signed Republic Act (RA) No. 11659, or “An Act Amending Commonwealth Act No. 146, commonly known as the Public Service Act” as modified, at the Rizal Hall, Malacañang Palace.
The modifications, according to Duterte, will help the Philippines “lead the route to economic recovery amidst the COVID-19 pandemic.”
“I believe that through this law, the easing out of foreign equity restrictions will attract more global investors, modernize several sectors of public service and improve the delivery of essential services,” Duterte said.
“Indeed, the enactment of this amended law, as well as the amended Foreign Investments Act, shall help stimulate the economy, especially for local businesses,” he added.
The modified Foreign Investments Act, or RA 11647, loosens limits on foreign investment by enabling international investments to contribute up to 100% of a local company’s capital.
Meanwhile, Duterte claims that the recently signed RA 11650 (a law that ensures inclusive education for learners with disabilities) demonstrates his administration’s dedication to provide “inclusive, accessible, and quality” education in the Philippines, particularly for those students with disabilities.
“As my term will soon come to a close, I challenge all of you—our leaders both at the national and local levels as well as all civil servants who are involved in governance —to work together in ensuring that we strictly uphold the rule of law. Let us all be vigilant and make sure that no one is above the law and that no Filipino will be left behind as we move forward to a much better Philippines,” Duterte said.
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