The Department of Trade and Industry-Construction Industry Authority of the Philippines (DTI-CIAP) held its 2nd dialogue with the key players in the industry to keep up with the latest in the Philippine construction scene.
The dialogue also served as a venue for the participants to identify matters that arise and resolve these issues as one unit.
According to Atty. Ruth B. Castelo, Undersecretary for Competitiveness and Ease of Doing Business Group (CEODBG), the dialogue aimed to seek updates on the first CIAP dialogue held last February 16, 2017, had there been changes and new pronouncements on the provisions for tax clearance as part of bidding requirements, DPWH issuance of Civil Works Registry, hotline for contractor complaints, simplified procurement process in infrastructure building, 2017 investment priority plans, and flagship projects.
The dialogue was also geared to encourage more local and smaller contractors to participate in future government projects.
Atty. Ruth B. Castelo (seated 5th from Left), Undersecretary for CIAP and Presiding Chairperson, with major industry players in a round table discussion.
Participating in the 2nd dialogue at the BOI Boardroom, Makati City on April 5, 2017 were representatives from Department of Transportation (DOTr), Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR), Board of Investments (BOI), Bases Conversion Development Authority (BCDA), Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE), Philippine Overseas Employment Authority (POEA), Government Procurement Policy Board (GPPB), Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA), Clark Development Corporation (CDC), Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH), Philippine Government Electronic Procurement System (PHILGEPS), Philippine Contractors Association (PCA), and the Chairmen of the different Implementing Boards of CIAP.
To strengthen Public-Private Partnerships (P3), DTI-CIAP provided the platform for all industry sectors to exchange notes and express intent to ramp up the Infrastructure agenda in the Golden Age of Infrastructure.
On the issue of timely and complete payment of taxes prior to joining the bidding, Ms. Grace Lacerna of BIR suggested that to avoid difficulties in entering a bid, contractors must duly accomplish a tax clearance. She also clarified that the effectivity of the clearance is now extended to one year.
DPWH stated that there are 6,000 contractors enrolled in the registry but only 2,000 were participating in P3 projects. Ms. Nimfa Potante of DPWH wants to capacitate smaller contractors and encourage them to participate in the biddings. Contractors who will secure projects with the government may opt to upgrade their category in the registry.
DPWH has also emphasized the dedicated hotline for contractor’s complaints. The information can be viewed in the DPWH website and is currently being disseminated through e-mail and SMS.
To simplify the procurement process, GPPB advised implementing agencies to get training every 6 months for knowledge updates. They also consolidated alternative methods of procurement to allow for faster and more convenient acquiring of infra services.
According to Assistant Secretary Bernardo of DPWH, there are projects rolled out by the department that are currently out on bidding. He also encourages contractors to participate and submit documents through PhilGeps.
“Despite the hurdles, there is no doubt that the construction industry is more than ready, and excited to build, build, build.” said Undersecretary Castelo in confidence.
Also according to the Undersecretary, now that the issues have been pointed out and the implementing agencies are actively taking part in bringing resolutions, the industry is evidently entrusting the local contractors to handle major infrastructure projects.
The CIAP is the central authority of the construction industry mandated to promote, accelerate, and regulate growth and development of the construction industry in conformity with the national goals.