SUPPORT | May 2, 2019

Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte to approve incentives for startups

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The President of the Philippines is expected to sign the bill allowed by a US$192 million R&D fund to support innovative startup ventures



President Rodrigo Duterte of the Philippines reportedly will sign a bill that’s put together to support startup ventures operating in the country, as told by KrAsia.

The official statement released by the Senate early this year said that the ‘Innovative Startup Act’ will provide startup founders access to a US$192 million fund. Selected startups are said to also receive assistance in tax breaks, grants, and immigration procedures for tech workers. It also mentioned networking opportunities with potential investors, mentors, and national government agencies.

The bill is called Senate Bill 1532 or known as ‘Innovative Startup Act’. It was ratified by the Philippine Senate in February. It will be processed into law and is expected to further support the ecosystem and benefit tech startups in three areas: transportation, finance, and healthcare.

In the bill, there are calls for the creation of the Philippine Startup Development Program. The Departments of Science and Technology (DOST), Information and Communications Technology (DICT), and Trade and Industry (DTI) will jointly manage by the development program with other governmental bodies.

“A thriving start-up ecosystem requires close collaboration between the public and private sectors,” said Luis Raymund Villafuerte from the Philippine House of Representatives told local media.

The bill is a sign that the Philippines has finally caught up with providing more tangible supports for its startup ecosystem, following the footsteps of its neighboring countries like Singapore, Indonesia, and Cambodia.

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