FDI policy review urged amid workplace closures

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A LEGISLATOR has asked the House committee on labor and employment to review foreign direct investment (FDI) policy amid the recent closures of multinational firms’ Philippine operations.

Kailangan i-review talaga natin ’yung policies natin regarding sa investments… (Investment policy needs to be reviewed) We have been providing incentives for FDI and yet… we are seeing a downtrend. We should look into it. Representative Ferdinand R. Gaite of Bayan Muna Party List said during a committee hearing Tuesday.

The committee heard representatives from three multinational companies that announced closures or reductions in their Philippine operations — Honda Cars Philippines, Inc. (HCPI), Nokia Technology Center Philippines and Wells Fargo & Co.

The three multinational firms told the committee that they will provide appropriate separation benefits for their employees.

A lawyer representing HCPI, Ariss N. Santos, said the automaker will provide “separation pay under the law, plus a minimum of one month pay for every year of service,” adding that employees will also receive a one-time lump sum of P100,000.

All HCPI employees will also have their health benefits extended until the end of the year, even after the closure of the manufacturing plant in Laguna.

“I think the offer is quite generous, quite above what is prescribed by law,” 1-Pacman Rep. Enrico A. Pineda, the committee chairman, said during the hearing. — Genshen L. Espedido