NEDA wants agencies to start consultations on opening up sectors

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Laborers at the construction site of a new expressway in Manila. (Reuters file)

MANILA – As the government readies a Foreign Investment Negative List (FINL) that will open more economic activities and sectors to foreign participation, the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) is also drafting an executive order (EO) for departments and agencies to start consultations on liberalization moves that will need legislation.

“Bottom line is, we’re coming up with a negative list; in addition, [we are drafting] an EO that is essentially an agenda for reform,” NEDA Policy and Planning Undersecretary Rosemarie G. Edillon told reporters on the sidelines of the recent Arangkada Philippines forum in Pasay City.

“It gives the marching orders for all government agencies to work towards opening up [sectors that] will require legislation. They need to conduct necessary consultations,” she explained.

Ms. Edillon declined to elaborate on the 11th FINL, which is in its final round of getting comments from stakeholders, saying only: “We have incorporated the violent reactions, the non-violent ones.”

Socioeconomic Planning Secretary Ernesto M. Pernia has said he wants to open to foreign participation retail trade, professions and public utilities, as well as ease restrictions on foreigners in construction and engineering works.