The House of Representatives said that it will prioritize the passage of the Bayanihan To Heal As One Act or Bayanihan 2 once their second regular session begins this month. Government economic managers and lawmakers have agreed with the bill’s provisions, raising its chances of being legislated. 

Will the provisions benefit small businesses?

The Senate, on the other hand, is considering including micro, small and medium enterprises (MSME) in the tourism and transportation industry’s government assistance packages since they are the most hard-hit sectors of the current pandemic. The government also wants to make sure that once they release funds for social amelioration, people will receive it immediately so as not to cause any backlog. 

House Speaker Alan Peter Cayetano notes that the Bayanihan 2 is necessary for the assistance of MSMEs to bounce back from financial losses. The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) is also pushing for other initiatives such as the Financial Institutions Strategic bill and the Government Financial Institutions Unified Initiatives to Distressed Enterprises for Economic Recovery bill. 

Bayanihan 2 also seeks to mobilize the BSP and the Securities and Exchange Commission in providing different forms of financial accommodations such as loan extensions.

Presidential spokesperson Harry Roque reported the deliberation on the extension of President Rodrigo Duterte’s emergency powers and the contents of the stimulus package during an online press briefing. He did note that the final version of the bill might only be completed after the president’s State of the Nation Address this month. 

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