The House of Representatives is mulling on reducing the number of holidays in the country considering its effect on the competitiveness of the country’s workforce, Speaker Feliciano Belmonte, Jr. said.
Belmonte, who represents the 4th District of Quezon City, made the disclosure after House leaders met with Joint Foreign Chambers and Philippine Business Groups in a consultative dialogue with an aim to craft a common economic legislative reform agenda that will sustain inclusive growth.
For 2014, there are at least 17 national holidays.
“I was the one who brought up on reducing the holidays. We have lots of holidays, and there are sorts of holidays that are of greater impact on certain parts of the country or a province. I am for letting those provinces to enjoy the holiday, but to make it a national holiday every time, these holidays would have an impact on businesses,” Belmonte told reporters.
“We have to study reducing the holidays, compare it with our neighbors; look in the context of being competitive. It’s important that we identify if the number of holidays has impact on the economy,” Belmonte added.
Of the 17 national holidays in the country for 2014, eight will transpire in the first six months including: Chinese New Year (January 31), EDSA Revolution (Feburary 25), Araw ng Kagitingan (April 9), Maundy Thursday (April 17), Good Friday (April 18), Black Saturday (April 19), Labor Day (May 1) and Independence Day (June 12).
The rest of the holidays are: Ninoy Aquino Day (August 21), National Heroes Day (August 25), All Saints Day (November 1), All Souls Day (November 2), December 24 as additional special non-working day, Christmas Day (December 25), December 26 as additional special non-working day, Rizal Day (December 30) and Last Day of the Year as Special Non Working Day (December 31). LLANESCA T. PANTI