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Perpetual life for firms, lifetime number for mobile users

President Rodrigo R. Duterte has signed a law that grants perpetual life to corporations and another that allows consumers to keep their mobile numbers for life even when they switch service providers.

The two laws were among the more than 20 measures that the President signed recently.

The Revised Corporation Code of the Philippines, signed by Duterte on February 20, 2019, contains provisions that remove the minimum number of incorporators, allow the registration of a one-person corporation, remove the requirement for minimum capitalization, permit the electronic filing of reportorial requirements and allow attendance in meetings via remote communication or in absentia, provide protection to minority stockholders, among others.

It amends the 38-year-old Corporation Code of the Philippines, according to principal author Senate Minority Leader Franklin M. Drilon.

He said the measure codifies international best practices "in order to make the Philippines an attractive investment destination that is conducive to business and entrepreneurship."

"The passage into law of this measure is critical in our bid to improve the country's business climate and make our economy more competitive with the rest of the world," Drilon said in a statement issued on February 21.

The new law is aimed at strengthening corporate governance in four areas: improving the ease of business in the country, prioritizing corporate and stockholder protection, instilling corporate and civic responsibility, and strengthening the country's policy and regulatory corporate framework.

Meanwhile, Republic Act 11202, or the Mobile Number Portability Act, empowers mobile phone users to keep their numbers for life.

The new law, which was signed by the President on February 8, 2019, allows consumers to keep their mobile number even if they switch networks or switch from postpaid to prepaid and vice versa.

Consumers would also not be charged any interconnection fees for domestic calls and text messages.

Acting Information and Communications Technology (ICT) Secretary Eliseo M. Rio, Jr. said this new law would pave the way for a more vibrant competition between telecommunication service providers.

“We hail the passage of this game-changing policy, which shifts the telecommunication services paradigm to be more consumer-centric,” he said in a statement on February 20.

“The law will cultivate a sense of urgency for telcos to deliver only the best service since subscribers now won’t hesitate to choose what’s best for their money’s worth,” he added. (Ventures Cebu)

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