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Senate still doubts Maharlika Investment Fund bill
Senate still doubts Maharlika Investment Fund bill
Senate still doubts Maharlika Investment Fund bill
by Mhillen Nicole Borja16 February 2023
Photo Courtesy: Wikipedia/International Service for Human Rights

Senators remained unconvinced regarding the proposed Maharlika Investment Fund (MIF) after its proponents failed to justify the bill's organizational structure, fund sources, and safeguards.

During the Senate hearing, Minority Leader Aquilino Pimentel III expressed dismay to economic managers for passing to Congress a low-grade proposal.

"There's some issue in the source of the fund. Being an administration measure, the Senate should not allow this to pass in its current form," the minority leader said.

"It is so disappointing because, for an administration measure, it should have been backed up by the best lawyers and bill drafters of the administration, yet this is the result,” he added.


He also stressed the apparent discomfort of proponents in responding to questions regarding the bill's mechanism.

"But where is the mechanism in the current bill on (how foreigners) can invest? What is the mechanism for the distribution of profits to a participating third-party investor?” he asked after mentioning foreign countries' interest in the proposed bill.

Source of Fund

Senator Sherwin Gatchalian also questioned the MIF's source of funds, which was proposed to be P50-B from the Land Bank and P25-B from the Development Bank of the Philippines (DBP).


This was after Land Bank President and CEO Cecilia Borromeo bragged about the P1.3 -T investible funds assuring that P50 would not hurt the government-owned bank.

"Why is this amount so huge? I’m not impressed that there is this much funds in government banks considering their specific mandate — Landbank for the agriculture sector and DBP for development projects," the Senator said.

Skeptical co-author

During the hearing, Senator Raffy Tulfo admitted that he still has second thoughts on the bill, considering that he is one of the authors.


"Pinag-aaralan ko pa rin po kung ano ba talagang magiging stand ko sa Maharlika Fund. Kung ito ba ay makakabuti sa taungbayan, at kapag nakita ko na hindi, then, I will not vote for it," he said.

The outcome of the recent hearing was contrary to House Speaker Martin Romualdez's projection that the bill will soon be approved by the Senate.

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