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PCC holds training on competition policy for legislative staff

/ 04:26 AM December 13, 2019

The Philippine Competition Commission said it was training legislative staff in Congress on competition law and policy to help them put pro-competition safeguards in the bills that they draft.

The PCC piloted its project at the Senate, kickstarting a series of capacity-building and advocacy seminars that will hopefully give the concerned people perspective in the subject of competition.

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If successful, the effort will save the competition watchdog time and resources, which would otherwise be used in correcting the anticompetitive provisions that find their way in congressional bills.

“Legislative staff are tasked to draft and study bills, serving as the technical backbone of Congress,” PCC Chair Arsenio Balisacan said in a statement on Thursday.

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“Impressing on them the importance of competition, particularly in crafting bills regulating trade, industry and commerce, will ensure that these will imbued with pro-competitive safeguards when passed into law,” he added.

The project, called “Capacity Improvement on Competition Advocacy for Legislative Staff,” was rolled out by PCC’s Legislative Liaison Office (LLO).

Enabling the legislative staff to pinpoint and discern competition concerns forms part of the PCC’s broader aim to engender a culture of competition in the whole of government, the PCC said.

The PCC said the LLO delved deep into specialized topics such as competition issues in government interventions, the competition landscape in key markets and competition impact assessment on proposed legislation.

This linkage with the Senate will also serve as a platform for the competition authority to advocate its priority bills across its seven identified focus areas, the PCC said, referring to telecommunications, energy, retail, construction, transportation, food and health and pharmaceuticals.

The PCC said the LLO would conduct a similar forum with the House of Representatives in the next quarter to be followed by local government units in the second half of 2020. –Roy Stephen C. Canivel

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TAGS: competition law and policy, Philippine Competition Commission
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