Lawmaker pushes corporate profit sharing

ARTIKULO - Delon Porcalla (The Philippine Star) - February 1, 2017 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines – A senior party-list member of the House of Representatives wants all companies in the Philippines to share 10 percent of their annual net income among all their employees – regardless of their status as workers.

Through House Bill 2625, Buhay Rep. Lito Atienza urged his colleagues, along with the entire business sector, to support such a proposal that would “mandate and institutionalize profit-sharing” – both to regular and contractual employees.

“This bill seeks to help our countrymen benefit from economic improvement by making sure this trickles down to our daily wage earners,” the former Manila mayor and a one-time head of the National Housing Authority said.

Hardworking Filipino workers employed locally deserve this, especially since “the Philippine economy is growing at a fast pace, owing largely to the billions of dollars remitted by overseas Filipino workers, as well as the business processing outsourcing industry,” he said.

Under the proposed bill, all business establishments that make a profit for a fiscal year shall annually distribute 10 percent of their net income to all their employees, both regular and contractual. 

The total amount given by the company thru profit sharing shall be tax creditable.

“If the investors and financiers are making so much money today, they should be sharing more with our low wage earners and rank and file. This aims to guarantee that movement in economy is immediately shared, so that everybody gets to benefit from it,” Atienza said.

He issued the statement during the hearing of the House committee on labor and employment where HB 2625 was taken up.

“This entails no sacrifice on the part of the investors because whatever is shared with their employees becomes tax-deductible for the succeeding year. When we filed this bill during the 16th Congress, it was approved unanimously by the committee,” he recalled. 

“In fact, all the members then expressed their support by becoming principal sponsors. All the employees’ groups who participated in the hearings were excited about it because they realized it would give them a bigger share in the growing economy of the country,” he said.  

Atienza noted that many firms have adopted a profit-sharing policy, and only want such institutionalized and implemented on a national scale, where even the lowest of workers get to enjoy from such additional remuneration.

Atienza’s bill was also supported by Rep. Mark Go of Baguio City.

“Once you initiate this profit sharing scheme, you will also encourage people to improve their performance because they know that if they improve their performance, it will also improve the amount that will be shared among them by the end of the year,” Go said. 

Atienza said Labor Undersecretary Bernard Olalia backed the measure and cited Art. 13 Section 3 of the 1987 Constitution where the state aims to “regulate the relations between workers and employers.”

This constitutional provision recognizes “the right of labor to its just share in the fruits of production and the right of enterprises to reasonable returns of investments, and to expansion and growth.”

“We urge the participation of all sectors concerned. Let’s discuss this proposed law so we can clarify issues at the committee level.  We expect Congress and the President to eventually support it,” Atienza said.

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