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Sep 23, 2017 @ 15:12

NEDA not giving up on federalism


There’s a need to align the development agenda to the possible change in government.

The National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) said they would have to create a separate roadmap to federalism should President Rodrigo Duterte’s proposal really push through.

NEDA Undersecretary Rosemarie Edillon said the government would have to carefully plan the transition to the new form of government, as it could drastically affect economic conditions and revenues being collected by the national government.

This would also have to be in sync with the Philippine Development Plan which was crafted by the agency for the six years under Duterte.

“Is it really possible to make it work given our peace and security problems? Our vulnerability to disasters? For the former, we would need a strong and nimble military able to move swiftly from one state to another,” Edillon said during a forum.

“Will federalism also result in a ‘race to the bottom’ where states, wanting to attract the most investments, will offer the sweetest package of incentives? Or, the opposite: will states, in a bid to quickly beef up their fiscal resources, impose more regulations, thus increasing the cost of doing business?”

Much depends on the pace of the reforms, as formal discussions for charter change have not been picked up by Congress so far.

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