The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), through the Board of Investments – Investment Assistance Center (BOI-IAC), has signed the Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) with the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to hasten facilitation of licenses and permits of existing and potential investors.

The two agencies would work to facilitate and simplify the process of the issuance of FDA permits and licenses for BOI applicants/investors in accordance with the FDA’s Citizen Charter. The overall objective of this agreement is to make investing in the Philippines easier, and thus more attractive to investors.

FDA Acting Director General Dr. Kenneth Hartigan-Go said that aside from regulating health products and safeguarding the national security, “we are also looking into trade facilitation and ease of doing business here in our country.”

Under the agreement, FDA would provide BOI the copies of policies, rules and regulations as well as a checklist in relation to applications for any permit, clearance or certificate pertaining to safety, efficacy or quality of health products as defined by R. A. No. 9711 which include food, drugs, cosmetics, medical devices, vaccines, in-vitro diagnostic reagents, radiation-emitting devices, and household/urban hazardous substances, including pesticides and toys, or consumer products that may have an effect on health, and other rules and regulations of FDA.

Authorized BOI representative/s or personnel would assist in the submission of as well as follow-up on the applications for permit, clearance or issuance of certification by FDA, in behalf of concerned BOI applicants or registered enterprises.

“It covers the whole process of investment cycle, from conceptualization, implementation and up to the closure,” BOI-IAC Executive Director Atty. Raul Angeles explained, “This is the service that we will provide to our clients. We will give a personalized service. We will assist them, go with them, and tell them to accomplish the requirements with the agencies they are dealing with.”

This agreement with the FDA is the second to be signed after a similar agreement with the Department of Environment and Natural Resources - Environmental Management Bureau (DENR-EMB) was signed in March of this year. The BOI is targeting ten (10) MOA with other government agencies by 2016 and is currently negotiating with Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), Housing and Land Use Regulatory Board (HLURB), Bureau of Customs (BOC), and Department of Agriculture (DA).

In addition to these initiatives, the BOI is also setting up its One Window Network (OWN) which would enable investors to post queries and file complaints online.

The BOI is aiming to be one of the best investment promotion agencies in Asia by year 2020 as these initiatives of their “Going the Extra Mile” project provides high impact services to investors that will result in favorable decisions to retain investments, expand and/or diversify their operations in the Philippines.