What does it take to move twice as fast?

Arangkada Progress Report

Infrastructure Tracker


The Arangkada Philippines monitors major infrastructure policy, airports, power, roads and rail, seaports, telecommunications, and water projects. According to the Build, Build, Build Infrastructure Program of the Duterte Administration, "acceleration of infrastructure and the development of industries will yield robust growth across the archipelago, create jobs, and uplift the lives of Filipinos." Trackers will be updated regularly to reflect project implementation. [ Check Status ]

Legislative Reform Tracker


The Arangkada Philippines supports legislative developments that encourage investment and job creation. Timely enactment of new laws and amendment of existing ones are crucial factors in sustaining the Philippine economy as well as boosting the country’s global competitiveness. [ Check Status ]

News Updates

Department of Homeland Security Issues Travel Advisory...

Posted on 2 January, 2019 at 15:00

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) today announced the determination that aviation security at Ninoy Aquino International Airport (MNL), which serves as a last-point-of-departure airport for flights to the United States, does not maintain and carry out effective security consistent with the security standards…

Duterte rating rises: Blow to critics or...

Posted on 2 January, 2019 at 13:00

Notwithstanding his threats against Catholic bishops, public satisfaction with President Rodrigo Duterte rose in December, the second time that his performance ratings increased after an 11-point decline in June, results of a recent Social Weather Stations (SWS) survey showed.

Legislative Tracker – December 2018

Posted on 2 January, 2019 at 12:46

Legislative Tracker – December 2018
Legislative Priorities – December 2018

Tax bureau moves to address businesses’ VAT...

Posted on 2 January, 2019 at 09:56

The 90-day deadline for processing value-added tax (VAT) refund claims now covers the actual payment of the amount, the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) said.

Power to the people

Posted on 26 December, 2018 at 16:00

The recent congressional bicameral conference committee approval of the Energy Virtual One-Stop Shop bill, or Evoss, has raised the expectations of power industry stakeholders.

Congress amends Corporation Code

Posted on 26 December, 2018 at 15:00

The bicameral conference committee in Congress approved yesterday the reconciled version of a bill amending the Corporation Code of the Philippines to make it easier for investors to set up businesses.

House members covet road tax fund –...

Posted on 26 December, 2018 at 13:00

Many members of the House of Representatives, including Majority Leader Rolando Andaya Jr. and Minority Leader Danilo Suarez, have sought the release…

Senate working on resolving data transmission bill...

Posted on 26 December, 2018 at 11:00

Senator Paolo Benigno A. Aquino IV said the open access in data transmission bill still has a chance to be passed in the Senate before the 17th Congress ends if the committee on science and technology addresses the concerns of some senators on the proposed measure.

[OPINION] Our yawning trade gap

Posted on 19 December, 2018 at 17:00

Last October, the Philippines posted its largest monthly trade deficit on record, at $4.2 billion — meaning that our total import bill…

[OPINION] Time Person(s) of the Year

Posted on 19 December, 2018 at 16:00

Time has just announced the 2018 Person of the Year as the “Guardians”: four journalists and the entire staff of one hometown newspaper.

[OPINION] DOTr project a flop?

Posted on 19 December, 2018 at 14:58

This time, DOTr made something happen fast. As soon as they inaugurated the Parañaque Integrated Terminal Exchange (PITX), DOTr made sure it flopped.

House body eases retail trade rules further

Posted on 12 December, 2018 at 17:48

The House of Representatives Committee on Trade and Industry approved on Tuesday a bill reducing the minimum paid-up capital requirement of foreign retailers to engage in business here.

In Vietnam’s nearly untapped market, foreign retailers...

Posted on 12 December, 2018 at 13:00

Retailers from across Asia are flooding into Vietnam as the country loosens restrictions on foreign companies, racing to bring convenience stores and supermarkets…

[OPINION] Coping with FIRe

Posted on 12 December, 2018 at 10:00

I had the privilege to listen to Dr. Aniceto Orbeta of the Philippine Institute for Development Studies (PIDS), the government think tank, when he made a presentation on Labor and Global Development…

Soon to be signed DOLE-Ecop pact seen...

Posted on 12 December, 2018 at 08:00

The Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) is aiming to double the count of regularized workers next year upon signing of a forthcoming memorandum of agreement…

[EDITORIAL] Legislative priorities

Posted on 11 December, 2018 at 10:00

Lawmakers were realistic enough to note that they were just laying the groundwork for an initiative that would have to be picked up by the next Congress.

[OPINION] Improving ease of doing business in...

Posted on 11 December, 2018 at 08:00

Earlier this month the World Bank released its Ease of Doing Business rankings. For the third year in a row New Zealand came in at number one.

American Chamber pushes for further easing of...

Posted on 10 December, 2018 at 13:00

Making the Foreign Investment Negative List “less negative” through legislation should bode well for lawmakers in an election year if the reforms benefit voters, the American Chamber of Commerce…


Posted on 10 December, 2018 at 11:34

More than a year since Duterte declared Marawi ‘liberated’ from Islamic State extremists, much of the city remains in ruins…

While PH was sleeping, IT-BPM industry grew

Posted on 7 December, 2018 at 13:00

Efrille goes back to her hometown in Bohol only twice a year—once for new year, and then in August for her daughter’s birthday.

Globalizing corporate Philippines

Posted on 7 December, 2018 at 10:52

For the longest time, the Philippines has been stereotyped as a principal source of cheap labor. Indeed, we have exported many of our people to greener pastures abroad.

[OPINION] Is manufacturing losing steam?

Posted on 6 December, 2018 at 15:00

After averaging 7-8 percent annual growth over the last eight years, the manufacturing sector posted a lackluster growth rate of 4 percent in the third quarter (Q3).

[OPINION] Charter change is our business

Posted on 6 December, 2018 at 13:00

Let this piece be an updating report, especially to my colleagues in business, on what the business sector is doing to be engaged in the move to amend our Constitution…

[OPINION] China’s peaceful rise revisited

Posted on 6 December, 2018 at 10:26

President Xi Jinping had hoped that the APEC Leaders Summit would be the validation of China’s soft power as the new champion of globalization and free trade…

ADB to fund technical assistance for three...

Posted on 6 December, 2018 at 08:00

The Asian Development Bank (ADB) is preparing $5 million worth of technical assistance grants for transport projects in Southeast Asia, with the Philippines getting funding for three projects.

Legislative Tracker – November 2018

Posted on 5 December, 2018 at 15:39

Legislative Tracker – November 2018

Traffic crisis bill advances in House

Posted on 5 December, 2018 at 15:04

The House of Representatives on Tuesday approved on second reading a measure designed to address worsening traffic in three key metropolitan areas in the next three years.

WESM’s commercial run in Mindanao to start...

Posted on 5 December, 2018 at 12:00

The commercial implementation of the Wholesale Electricity Spot Market (WESM) in Mindanao may finally happen next year.

Tax amnesty faces delay

Posted on 5 December, 2018 at 10:00

The much-awaited tax amnesty early next year may be delayed if Congress will not pass it together with the automatic exchange of information and the lifting of bank secrecy…

Duterte breaks ground for PH’s longest bridge...

Posted on 4 December, 2018 at 17:12

President Rodrigo Duterte led in the groundbreaking and capsule-laying for the construction of what is purported to be the longest bridge in the country – Panguil Bay Bridge (PBB) project…

[OPINION] Completion of projects start

Posted on 4 December, 2018 at 11:50

Completion of projects start DEMAND AND SUPPLY – Boo Chanco (The Philippine Star) – December 3, 2018 –

BIR says health card premiums not taxable

Posted on 3 December, 2018 at 13:00

The Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) has clarified that health insurance premiums are not taxable.

Philippines: journalist Maria Ressa to turn herself...

Posted on 3 December, 2018 at 11:08

Maria Ressa, the editor of Philippine online news website Rappler, will turn herself into the authorities on Monday after a warrant was issued for her arrest.

[OPINION] Inflexible labor regulations have negative consequences

Posted on 29 November, 2018 at 13:00

After more than two years in office, the Duterte administration has not fulfilled its promise to end contractualization. Reports indicate that there are an estimated 1.3 million Filipinos…

[OPINION] Crucial battles over water

Posted on 29 November, 2018 at 10:28

Governance experts predict the next world war will be fought not over oil, but over water. In the Philippines, there are already crucial battles over this issue.

Diokno denies PHL exposed to China ‘debt...

Posted on 21 November, 2018 at 17:09

The Philippines does not consider itself vulnerable to falling into an alleged “debt trap” with China but is willing to hear a pitch from Washington that the US represents the “better option” for economic partnership, Budget Secretary Benjamin E. Diokno said.

Study finds Philippines’ talent competitiveness eroded

Posted on 21 November, 2018 at 13:20

The Philippines’ ability to develop, attract and retain highly skilled professionals worsened in 2018 due to a persistent job-skills mismatch despite increasing investments in education…

[OPINION] Are we ready for the digital...

Posted on 20 November, 2018 at 11:09

The two charts below accentuate what is self-explanatory. Ambe Tierro of Accenture and Fred Ayala of Ayala Education gave an enlightening and challenging presentation on Artificial Intelligence (AI).

[OPINION] What caused the slowdown?

Posted on 19 November, 2018 at 14:37

The third-quarter GDP growth report was a letdown to many, as the 6.1-percent GDP growth rate reported was much slower than the 7.2-percent figure posted…

DOF to push for exchange info, bank...

Posted on 16 November, 2018 at 15:36

The Department of Finance (DOF) said yesterday it would appeal for the legislature to retain the exchange of information and bank secrecy provisions under the proposed tax amnesty bill.

PCC seeks review of common tower policy

Posted on 15 November, 2018 at 13:37

The Philippine Competition Commission (PCC), opposed to a plan to limit the country’s tower companies to only two, urged agencies to reassess the proposal saying limiting the number of players in the market would have adverse effects on market competition.

Senators keen on legislation to lure investors,...

Posted on 14 November, 2018 at 13:23

Senators signaled on Tuesday that they are open to address concerns raised by foreign businessmen that it will take more than presidential edict to liberalize the economy, indicating readiness to do…

Joint Foreign Chambers pushes easing of restrictions...

Posted on 14 November, 2018 at 10:50

Foreign business groups are pushing for a further easing of restrictions for foreign investors through amendments to the Constitution, and release of the Foreign Investment Negative List (FINL) every three years instead of two, to allow the country to attract more foreign direct investments (FDIs).

Higher fuel, power costs seen hindering foreign...

Posted on 12 November, 2018 at 15:47

Rising prices of power and fuel are becoming major roadblocks to increasing foreign investment in the country, an economist from the Asian Institute of Management (AIM) said.

Gov’t to fine-tune ‘Trabaho’ bill

Posted on 12 November, 2018 at 12:00

The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) is in talks with the Department of Finance (DOF) to fine-tune some provisions in the so-called “Trabaho” bill, and ensure it would have only “minimal risk.”

RFINL seen to further boost manufacturing sector–Neda

Posted on 12 November, 2018 at 10:41

The implementation of the recently approved 11th Regular Foreign Investment Negative List (RFINL) will further boost the performance of the manufacturing sector, according to the National Economic and Development Authority (Neda).

Zubiri backs action on ‘non-inflationary’ tax reform

Posted on 9 November, 2018 at 13:00

Senate Majority Leader Juan Miguel F. Zubiri said the Department of Finance (DoF) needs to focus on tax measures that will have minimal inflationary impact.

[OPINION] The problem is poverty

Posted on 9 November, 2018 at 10:24

I’ve been accused of being too positive about this administration. But after the ineffectual rule of the last one, someone who promised decisions was a relief. And anyone who’d break the “trapo” mold was earnestly needed.

More laws needed to ease investment restrictions...

Posted on 8 November, 2018 at 15:43

Further easing restrictions on foreign investments after the recent signing of the 11th Foreign Investment Negative List (FINL) would fall largely on Congress through the amendments of laws that cap foreign equity in viable industries, the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) said.

[OPINION] Birthing the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region

Posted on 8 November, 2018 at 12:00

As with planned caesarean procedures, we know beforehand this baby’s birthday. On Jan. 21, 2019, the people within the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) will determine in a plebiscite…

BCDA postpones Clark airport O&M bidding

Posted on 8 November, 2018 at 10:54

State-owned Bases Conversion and Development Authority (BCDA) has postponed the opening of bids for the Clark International Airport operations and maintenance (O&M) contract scheduled yesterday.

Philippines ranking falls in Ease of Doing...

Posted on 7 November, 2018 at 11:33

The Philippines ranked lower in the World Bank’s Ease of Doing Business Report 2019, placing 124th out of 190 countries from 113th previously, largely due to higher business registration costs and increased time for imports inspection.

DOF supports Bataan nuclear power plant revival

Posted on 6 November, 2018 at 15:56

The Department of Finance (DOF) is supporting the proposed revival of the mothballed Bataan Nuclear Power Plant (BNPP) to bring down the high costs of electricity in the country.

[OPINION] Red tape pa rin!

Posted on 6 November, 2018 at 14:56

Last week, former Comelec commissioner Goyo Larrazabal posted this tweet: “A friend renewing his passport in Malaysia: Around 8:00 a.m. – Arrived at the immigration office and got a queue number.

Legislative Tracker – October 2018

Posted on 6 November, 2018 at 10:37

Legislative Tracker – October 2018

PHL to pursue amendments to open economy

Posted on 6 November, 2018 at 10:23

The government will immediately pursue amendments to current laws to further open them up to foreign participation after “marginal improvements” were realized in the latest Foreign Investment Negative List (FINL).


Posted on 5 November, 2018 at 17:30

The Department of Finance (DOF) and the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) unequivocally express their strong objections to the 2019 World Bank Doing Business (DB) report, which shows a drop in the Philippines’ ranking by 11 notches from 113 (2018) to 124 (2019).

Philippines slips in Doing Business rank

Posted on 5 November, 2018 at 15:30

The Philippines managed to improve its score in the World Bank’s annual report that tracks economies’ competitiveness in ease of doing business, but its rank slipped as reforms to streamline transactions…

11th Foreign Investment Negative List bares ‘modest’...

Posted on 5 November, 2018 at 13:30

Malacañang on Wednesday finally issued the government’s closely watched list of sectors in which foreign participation is regulated, showing sectors where restrictions have eased including teaching in “higher education levels.”

[EDITORIAL] Still restrictive

Posted on 5 November, 2018 at 12:30

There was palpable disappointment among foreign investors’ groups when Malacañang finally released last week the 11th Foreign Investment Negative List (FINL), which specifies sectors where foreigners are not allowed to invest in or are limited to a maximum of 40 percent.

  All rights to the stock images are owned by Getty Images and its image partners and are protected by United States copyright laws, international treaty provisions and other applicable laws.
Getty Images and its image partners retain all rights and are available for purchase by visiting gettyimages website.

Arangkada Philippines: A Business Perspective — Move Twice As Fast | Joint Foreign Chambers of the Philippines