Home One News No issues with Maharlika Investment Fund — Medalla

No issues with Maharlika Investment Fund — Medalla

A Philippines peso note is seen in this illustration on June 2, 2017. — REUTERS

THE BANGKO SENTRAL ng Pilipinas (BSP) has no issues with the current version of the bill seeking to establish the Maharlika Investment Fund (MIF), its governor said on Monday.

“The bill, as it is now, is okay. This is the product of long periods of discussions on the bill,” BSP Governor Felipe M. Medalla told reporters on the sidelines of the FinTech Alliance’s general membership meeting.   

He said the fact that it is more of a development rather than a sovereign wealth fund is good.   

“It is no longer a sovereign wealth fund. It is now more of a national development, investment fund. I don’t know what it will be used for. But the way it’s evolving now, it will be very targeted, and it will have many good governance principles,” he added.

The requirement for the BSP to contribute 100% of its dividends to the fund’s first two years is also not an issue, Mr. Medalla said.

“The balance sheet of the central bank is quite strong. The postponement of the capital infusion by the National Government to the BSP is not a critical issue,” he said.   

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After the first two years, the central bank’s contribution to the fund will be brought down to 50% of its dividends. The remaining 50% will then be remitted to the National Government for the increase in capitalization of the BSP.

The fund will also draw initial capital from Land Bank of Philippines, Development Bank of the Philippines, Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corp. and proceeds from the privatization and transfer of government assets. 

“The Maharlika Investment Fund is for a more strategic focus on investments. (It can) focus on climate change, for instance. (It offers) a more focused fund that can help achieve the national agenda,” Mr. Medalla added.   

Senate President Juan Miguel F. Zubiri last week said the MIF bill would likely be approved this week.

President Ferdinand R. Marcos, Jr. has certified Senate Bill No. 2020 as urgent, which means it can be approved on second and third reading on the same day. — Keisha B. Ta-asan

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