This paper indicates that the Philippines has not maximized the potential gains and opportunities in joining the looming ASEAN Economic Community in terms of increased trade and investments relative to other middle-income ASEAN member states. Any gain, albeit minimal, has been achieved by joining the global production networks.
It also supports various studies which argue that the impediments to faster economic growth are largely internal and that the Philippines could have grown substantially had resources been spent on achieving productivity, improving governance, and strengthening institutions. The government has to continue implementing measures to promote competition and strengthening regulatory framework especially in public utilities. An increase in infrastructure investment, power and logistics in particular, is crucial in reducing the cost of doing business in the country. A review of the constitutional limitations on foreign equity particularly the 60-40 rule is also warranted.
Moreover, much could have been achieved if the legislative and regulatory limitations that impede the implementation of intra- and extra-ASEAN commitments have been addressed. Tapping member states’ legislatures through the AIPA to actively participate in mapping out and enacting the necessary laws and measures could facilitate the implementation not only of the goals of integration per se but also in fasttracking the reforms needed to achieve competitiveness at the country level.>>read complete document