Financial execs oppose Cha-cha, say gov't must focus on economic recovery

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Jan 18 2021 06:50 PM

The Philippine Stock Exchange (PSE) building at the Bonifacio Global City, Taguig. Jonathan Cellona, ABS-CBN News file photo

MANILA - A group composed of the country’s top financial executives on Monday said it was “strongly opposed” to Charter change “at this time.”

The Financial Executives Institute of the Philippines (FINEX) said that while it supports amending the economic provisions of the 1987 Constitution, there were other measures that the government could do to attract foreign investors. 

“For example, still pending for enactment into law are the Corporate Recovery and Tax Incentives for Enterprises Bill (CREATE) and the Government Financial Institutions Unified Initiatives to Distressed Enterprises for Economic Recovery Bill (GUIDE). There are also efforts to put in place a new stimulus package to revive and restore our economy to normalcy,” said FINEX president Francis Lim.

The group also urged President Rodrigo Duterte to sign the Financial Institutions Strategic Transfer Bill (FIST), which was ratified by Congress before its Christmas break.

Lim said doing Cha-cha was “akin to undertaking house renovation while the family struggles to pay for the food, basic education, hospitalization expenses and other basic necessities badly needed by the family.”

“We call on Congress to tackle the legislative initiatives on the economy at the earliest possible time, rather than devote its time and the country’s meager resources to a highly controversial and divisive issue at this time,” Lim said in a statement.

Business groups such as the Management Association of the Philippines (MAP) and the Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry (PCCI) earlier also expressed reservations about Cha-cha even as they voiced support for amending some of the Constitution’s eeconomic provisions.

AKO BICOL party-list Rep. Alfredo Garbin had said the lower chamber will resume its hearings on Cha-cha primarily to amend Articles II, XIV and XVI, which are provisions in the Constitution that prevent foreign ownership of land and businesses in the country.

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