LITTLE over a year after a landmark antitrust law was implemented in the country, over 60 mergers and acquisitions have been reviewed by the Philippine Competition Commission (PCC) to promote fair market competition.
“While still young, the PCC has been vigilant in safeguarding market competition to ensure consumer benefit,” Arsenio Balisacan, PCC Chair said in a statement.
The PCC was created in February 2016. Since then, the agency has been proactive in its role, processing and deciding over 60 mergers and acquisitions that covered a diverse range of industries including, but not limited to, healthcare, retail, and telecommunications.
Republic Act (RA) 10667, or the Philippine Competition Act, took effect on August 8, 2015 and established the PCC as its independent quasi-judicial regulator against anti-competitive mergers and acquisitions, anti-competitive agreements, and abuses of market dominance.
In less than four months after the commissioners were appointed, the antitrust commission completed and ran through public consultations across the country its draft implementing rules and regulations (IRR). The final IRR was promulgated on May 30 and published on June 3.
“We believe that engaging the public is one of the best ways to ensure that their welfare is the primary consideration on the exercise of our mandate,” Balisacan said.
A former secretary of Socioeconomic Planning and director general of the National Economic and Development Authority, Balisacan, was joined by PCC Commissioners Johannes Bernabe, El Cid Butuyan, and Stella Quimbo.
The PCC will continue to protect fair market competition, which is key to accelerating investment in the Philippines, Balisacan noted.
Businesses could expect nothing less than an independent, credible and objective delegation of its duties, he said.
“I hope the business community will see the PCC not as an additional burden or red tape, but as their partners in making our country more attractive to investments,” Balisacan said.
“The PCC will continue to serve its mandate which we believe is a vital contribution not only for sustaining the Philippine economy’s robust growth, but also for making this growth more inclusive,” he said.