DOF chief Diokno: Maharlika fund IRR revisions ‘within bounds of law’
MANILA, Philippines — Changes made in the Implementing Rules and Regulations (IRR) of the Maharlika Investment Fund (MIF) “are within the bounds of the law,” Department of Finance (DOF) Sec. Benjamin Diokno said Monday.
He also noted that the revisions were “enhancements” to establish “a strong corporate governance structure.”
The Palace released the MIF’s IRR on Saturday, November 11, after it was ordered suspended by President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. in October to allow a review.
The final version of the IRR includes expanding the power of Marcos in choosing members of the board of the Maharlika Investment Corp. (MIC), which will manage the MIF. It gives Marcos the authority to “either accept or reject” nominees to the board of directors of the MIC submitted by the advisory body, which is composed of the national treasurer, the socioeconomic planning secretary, and the budget secretary.
“The enhancements introduced by the IRR are all within the bounds of the law, meant to give full meaning to the establishment of a strong corporate governance structure,” Diokno said in a statement, adding that the IRR’s finalization came at an opportune time as both foreign and local investors have expressed interest in the MIF.
“Most importantly, this affirms the Marcos Jr. administration’s commitment to see the Fund off and running by the end of the year and effectively paves the way for the full operationalization of a well-structured, robust, and effective sovereign wealth fund that will advance the Philippines’ long-term growth,” he also said.
In a separate statement on Sunday, Budget Secretary Amenah Pangandaman also backed the MIF’s IRR. She said the new IRR would allow the Board of Directors more independence.
“I am glad of this development, as this shall allow the MIC Board to have the liberty and flexibility to fulfill its mandate, and explore beneficial investment opportunities while adhering faithfully to the letter of the law and ensuring high-impact investments that are in line with the country’s socioeconomic development policies and programs,” she said
Both Pangandaman and Diokno expressed their support for the MIF’s revised IRR.
“I commit my full and unequivocal support for the smooth implementation of the MIF’s IRR, with trust and confidence that MIF’s managers will perform their duties and responsibilities to the best of their abilities for the good of the nation,” Pangandaman said.