German companies welcome changes to retail trade liberalization law

Louella Desiderio – The Filipina star

January 15, 2022 | 00:00

MANILA, Philippines — The German-Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry (GPCCI) said the recent passage of a law easing restrictions for foreign retailers would help make the country more attractive for investment.

GPCCI executive director Christopher Zimmer said in a statement that the group welcomes the enactment of Republic Act 11595 or amendments to the Retail Liberalization Act of 2000 (RTL) that facilitates the establishment of foreign retailers in the country.

In particular, the law reduced capital requirements for foreign retailers to around 25 million pesos from $2.5 million or around 125 million pesos.

Under the law, the minimum paid-up capital requirement would be reviewed by the Department of Commerce and Industry, the Securities and Exchange Commission and the National Authority for Economics and Development every three years.

“As the law addresses existing barriers to investment, we see tremendous opportunities for foreign retailers to participate in the Philippine market and will also help us further promote the country as an attractive investment destination,” Zimmer said.

GPCCI President Stefan Schmitz said the RTL’s move is a step in the right direction and supports the country’s economic recovery from the pandemic.

He said that for the country “to realize its full potential, we urge the Philippine government to pass the other economic bills such as the amendments to the Foreign Investment Act (FIA) and the Civil Service Act ( PSA) as they complement RTL by further opening up the Philippine economy,” he said.

The amendments to the AIF aim to promote foreign investment in the country.

Under the proposed measure, an inter-agency coordination committee for investment promotion that would be responsible for a foreign investment promotion plan would be created, as well as an online portal including a directory of local companies ready to build partnerships in priority sectors.

The proposed amendments to the LSP, on the other hand, aim to allow greater foreign investment in the telecommunications and transport sectors.

GPCCI represents German companies in the Philippines and has around 300 members.

The group supports businesses looking to set up and grow in the country.


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