Press Release
November 23, 2015

Senate gives nod to SEC extension office in Bacolod

The Senate today approved on third and final reading a bill which seeks to establish a Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) office in Bacolod City.

Senator Serge Osmeña, chairman of the Banks, Financial Institutions and Currencies and sponsor of House Bill No. 2360, said the establishment of an extension office in Bacolod City would declog the business registration applications at the SEC Iloilo office.

Osmeña expressed confidence the development would spur economic development in the Visayas region, as he noted that the long waiting time for the approval of registration applications at the SEC-Iloilo office has led to a slowdown in the economic development of the Western Visayas region.

SEC-Iloilo has only 11 personnel. It has processed a total of 15,760 registrations, of which a total of 6,933 companies were located in Negros Occidental.

Osmeña said the opening of the Bacolod extension office would enhance the monitoring capabilities of the SEC in Iloilo and Cebu, and discourage and prevent the proliferation of investment scams in the region.

"SEC Bacolod can provide investor information and assistance by conducting public seminars, attending speaking engagements and generating and disseminating investment-related information materials," Osmeña said.

Records show that 5,640 corporations have principal offices in Bacolod City as of January 2015; Negros Occidental has 8,296 corporations; and Negros Oriental has 1,493 corporations. Bacolod City is the most populous city in Negros island region and the second most populous city in Visayas after Cebu City.

Records show that from 2009 to 2014, corporate registration in Bacolod has grown by five percent, Negros Occidental by 15 percent and Negros Oriental by 15 percent.

"At least P3.4 billion worth of paid-up capital was infused in the Negros island region between 2009 to 2014. This represents a 39 percent year to year increase in investments for the past five years," Osmeña said.

Once the measure is enacted into law, he said Bacolod City will be the 9th city in the country to have a SEC extension. The other extension offices are located in Cebu, Davao, Cagayan de Oro, Zambaonga, Iloilo, Legazpi, Tarlac and Baguio.

The bill was introduced by Representatives Evelio Leonardia, Sonny Collantes, Jorge Almonte, Rodel Batocabe and Antonio Tinio.

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