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Multinational companies await Philippines joining RCEP

Economic managers warned that the Philippines could lose more than half of its import and export markets if it fails to ratify a Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP), a free trade deal among 15 countries in the region. The National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA), Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), and Department of Agriculture are making last-ditch efforts to push the trade deal’s approval by the Philippine Senate. Trade Secretary Ramon M. Lopez said the delay will lead to difficulties for investors as they will have to comply with the old rules instead of the simplified alternative provided by the RCEP trade deal. Lopez said that many multinational companies are waiting for the Philippines to join RCEP before deciding to invest.

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