Regulatory agencies must apply Regulatory Impact Assessment – World Bank, Malacanang

It is therefore necessary for regulatory agencies to undertake the RIA process which involves problem definition, setting the objectives, identifying options (from doing nothing or status quo to other options), impact analysis (cost-benefit analysis), comparing options, and implementation and monitoring.

World Bank strongly suggests that regulatory agencies must subject any proposed regulation to the regulatory impact assessment (RIA), a tool that ensures the quality of regulations through a rigorous, well-defined and evidence-based analysis.

RIA is a process and a document to “clean” the rules particularly those involving high regulatory risks that reduce investment and competition; high transaction costs due to a complex, multi-layered, often arbitrary rules that are vulnerable to corruption; too little market regulation, poor enforcement, and under-institutionalization in policy areas as consumer and environmental protection; and checks and balances, such as  an effective judiciary which are weak, harming new entrants.

In a recent training on RIA, World Bank emphasizes that a good regulation should be  focused on policy problem,  introduced when necessary and proportionate to the risk posed by the policy problem, accountable  to those affected by  the regulation and those who confer regulatory authority, transparent  or consultation based, and consistent,  taking into account existing rules and regulations.

Corollary to this, the Office of the President issued Memorandum No. 27, series of 2017 which, directs among others, the NEDA to promote among regulatory agencies the use of RIA and other related tools.  In Turn, NEDA now implements the Program on Modernizing Government Regulations (MGR) in cooperation with the Development Academy of the Philippines.

PPA approves 7% rate hike for cargo handling at Manila Ports

The Philippine Ports Authority (PPA) issued Memorandum Circular (MC) No. 07-2018 that approves the 7% increase of cargo handling tariff for international containerized and non-containerized cargoes at the two international terminals in Manila. The new rate takes effect on June 5, 2018.

PPA’s approved rate is lower than the 8.7% hike requested by the terminal operators, Asian Terminals, Inc. (ATI), which operates the Manila South Harbor, and the International Container Terminal Services, Inc. (ICTSI), which operates at the Manila International Container Terminal (MICT).

Under their contracts with PPA, both terminal operators may file for a rate hike every two years. The last cargo-handling tariff rate adjustment was in 2015, when PPA granted an 8% rate increase. Their petitions are in keeping with PPA Administrative Order 02-2018 which prescribes the revised methodology and formula for adjustment of Cargo Handling Tariff.

Prior to the approval of the rate adjustment, the Export Development Council (EDC) expressed its opposition to the original 8.72% request using the Consumer Price Index (All Items) National Capital Region. The CPI (All items) Philippines shall be the factor of adjustment as provided in Section 7 of PPA AO 02-2018. If applied, the rate hike should have been 6.52%.

Hence, for loaded Container Yard/Full Container Load is charged at US$ 105.457 for 20 ft container and US$ 147.517 for 40 ft. container. Empty Container is charged at US$ 88.646 for 20ft and US$ 114.203 for 40ft. Schedule of Cargo Handling Tariff at Manila International Container Terminal and South Harbor can be downloaded at PPA website at

Government leads Philippine Halal industry promotion

Government efforts for the development and promotion of Philippine Halal Industry are underway to tap the rising demand on Halal products and services. The halal food industry is estimated to reach 3 trillion in 2021 that can be tapped by the Philippines.

This trend provides strong but challenging opportunities for the Philippines. In 2017, the Philippines only captured P5.52 billion on revenues from halal products or 8.73% of the country’s total exports valued at P63.23 billion.

To seize the opportunities on halal markets, the Philippine Halal Export Development and Promotion Board is working vigorously on the development of Philippine Halal industry.

The Halal Board, composed of several government agencies such as the Departments of Trade, Agriculture, Foreign Affairs, Tourism, Health, Science and Technology, is tasked by Republic Act 10817 or the Philippine Halal Export Development and Promotion Act of 2016, to “formulate, advocate, coordinate, oversee and assess the implementation of the Philippine Halal Export Development and Promotion Program”.

Recently, the Halal Board launched the Philippine National Halal Certification Scheme and the Accreditation Guidelines at the 1st Philippine National Halal Conference in Davao City. The National Halal Certification scheme will serve as guiding principles in accrediting halal certifiers and enable Philippine products to be accepted as halal players in global halal ecosystem.

For its part, the Department of Agriculture formulated standards for slaughtering that must be followed by halal producers. These are standards for Feeds, Agriculture and Fishery Products, Slaughtering Practice for Ruminants and Slaughtering Practice for Poultry. An accepted standard across the whole halal value chain must be in place to meet the requirements of halal markets.

“Awareness campaign is also being done to encourage exporters to improve their products to be competitive and penetrate the global Halal market”, Halal Board Chair and Trade Secretary Ramon Lopez said during the Halal Conference. He also enjoined the academe to include halal in its curriculum and promote research and development on halal to comply with international requirements.

Halal industry can be developed beyond food particularly in tourism, pharmaceutical, travel, modest fashion and cosmetics.