Philippines Finalizes PPP Code, Welcomes Strategic Investments

By Francis Allan L. Angelo

The Philippine government has completed the Implementing Rules and Regulations (IRR) of the Public-Private Partnership (PPP) Code, setting the stage for continued collaboration between public and private sectors under a stable and predictable policy framework.

In a press statement, National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) Secretary Arsenio M. Balisacan affirmed this move during the signing ceremony of the PPP Code IRR on Thursday.

The IRR finalization is seen as a testament to the government’s determination to advance its “Build-Better-More” infrastructure program, designed to spur social and economic transformation across the nation.

“The PPP Program is a major government initiative—in light of the tight fiscal space, it is an essential component of the President’s transformation agenda under the Philippine Development Plan (PDP) 2023-2028,” Balisacan said.

He emphasized the urgency of attracting strategic investments to bolster the country’s economic growth potential, asserting that the government is fully committed to supporting investors interested in capitalizing on one of Asia’s most dynamic economies.

The new PPP Code and its IRR provide a cohesive legal framework for PPPs at national and local levels, updating the legal landscape that was last revised with the Build-Operate-Transfer Law amendment in 1994. This updated law aims to facilitate developments across various sectors and hasten the delivery of public services that are affordable, accessible, and efficient.

PPP Center Executive Director Undersecretary Ma. Cynthia C. Hernandez conveyed her confidence that the IRR, reflective of all stakeholder inputs, will bolster the investment climate in the country.

“With the PPP Code IRR now signed, we are confident that its updated policy framework will strengthen the country’s investment ecosystem,” Hernandez said.

The PPP Code of the Philippines, or Republic Act No. 11966, was enacted on December 5, 2023, with the mandate for the PPP Governing Board to issue the IRR within 90 days of the law’s effectivity. Following comprehensive consultations with stakeholders from January onwards, the IRR has been crafted to ensure inclusivity and effectiveness.

With the IRR signed, it will be made available to the public on March 22 and will come into effect on April 6, 2024, fifteen days following its publication. This marks a significant milestone for the country, reinforcing the government’s initiative to create a conducive environment for public-private partnerships and to accelerate infrastructure development and economic progress in the Philippines.