Abolition of PITC pushed in House amid procurement issues
MANILA, Philippines — A House of Representatives leader is pushing for the abolition of the Philippine International Trading Corporation (PITC) amid the recent budgetary and procurement issues faced by the agency.
Under House Bill No. 10221, Deputy Speaker and Cagayan de Oro City Rep. Rufus Rodriguez said the PITC should be abolished, with the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) taking over the functions of the agency in relation to facilitative trade-relayed services, responsive business solutions, and trade-related government-to-government transactions.
In pushing for the agency’s abolition, Rodriguez pointed out that the 2022 audit report of PITC showed that P11.02 billion worth of funds transferred to the agency by other government offices from 2014 to 2020 remain unutilized.
“There are also reports of source agencies using the interests from money transferred to the PITC to generate savings, which are used by the source agency to fund bonuses, among others,” Rodriguez said in the bill.
The PITC was originally established as a mechanism to formalize trade with planned economies through government-to-government procurement.
Rodriguez, however, pointed out that currently, there are only two centrally planned economies—Cuba and North Korea.
“The trade liberalization thrust of the global economy has made the mandate of the PITC redundant and irrelevant in the current times. The passage of R.A. No. 9184 or the ‘Government Procurement Reform Act’ has also weakened the mandate of the PITC,” he added.
Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez III earlier this month said that proposals to abolish the PITC is “worth looking at.”
A similar measure seeking to abolish the PITC has also been filed in the Senate.
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