Solon: Charter change to boost manufacturing

The House of Representatives’ Committee on Constitutional Amendments Chairman Alfredo Garbin Jr. on Friday said that evidence and data show that liberalizing the economic provisions of the Constitution will boost the influx of foreign direct investment in the manufacturing sector.

Garbin’s statement came as the House leadership led by Speaker Lord Allan Velasco discussed in the plenary session the benefits and disadvantages of liberalizing the economy under Resolution of Both Houses Number 2 (RBH 2), which the Speaker principally authored.

Speaking in Filipino, the AKO Bicol Party-list Representative said “the truth presented by the data of the Philippine Statistics Authority is that FDI brings with it huge amounts of capital that contributes to local economies.”

This capital, said the lawmaker, “contributes to the local economy by paying taxes, so many taxes—business taxes, real property taxes, income taxes. It also brings advanced technology, management expertise, most importantly technology transfer, and it also significantly increases the much needed employment opportunities to our countrymen.”

According to Garbin, data from the PSA shows that FDI provides 1.278 million jobs in the manufacturing sector, with an annual per capita income of P294,000.

The lawmaker reiterated the points earlier emphasized by fellow Bicolano, House Ways and Means Chair and Albay 2nd District Rep. Joey Salceda, who in his sponsorship speech said that there was a correlation between FDI inflows, job generation, and poverty reduction.

“In a cross-country study of the impact of foreign direct investment inflows on poverty reduction in the ASEAN and source economies in 2019, it shows that the increase in FDIs positively impact the quality of life as measured by the human development index in ASEAN countries,” said Garbin.

“Being open to foreign direct investment addresses not just economic growth, but it also addresses economic development.”

The United Nations Development Program defines HDI as “a summary measure of average achievement in key dimensions of human development: a long and healthy life, being knowledgeable and having a decent standard of living.

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