MY TWO CENTS’: Better GOCC Collections: why they are good for us

Improved collection of our Government Owned and Controlled Corproation (GOCC) dividends means two things: better management of the said corporations, and less corruption in the way these corporations are run. 

At the end of the day, these GOCCs are organized because they either perform strategic functions for  the economy, such as serve as precursor industries that support downsteam enterprises, such as copper smelters, basic steel plants or power plants or they serve sectors that the market cannot effectively serve, such as agricultural financing. 

In recent years however, may of these GOCCs were either unable to turn proper profits, or were not remitting these to the national treasury like they are required to. Worse, many of those not profitable are subsidized by our tax money. 

That said, unless they perform a strategic economic role or necessary service, GOCCs that need to subsidized would be better off closed or sold to those who can make them profitable. Government has no business keeping enterprises and haing taxpayers money to keep them alive unless they perform a necessary service.

It goes without saying, however, that despite such lofty objectives, it is necessary that these enterprises should at the very least not operate at a loss. Breaking even is enough. 

Our economic managers have therefore done a good job in helping make these enterprises profitable enough to generate better dividends for the peoples money invested in these firms. They have also done a great job collecting them. Sources say that before 2016, many of these GOCCs did not remit the dividends and similar earnings they were required to remit.

Moving forward however, it is necessary to ensure their profitability, so that they can also attract and retain the best and the brightest executives to work for them. Imagine a large GOCC like the Paper Industries Corporation of the Philippines or National Steel Corporation. 

If well run, we can expect a lot of good products from these companies that can spur many downstream industries, apart from the employment that it generates. Time was when both companies employed about 4-5000 staff. that helped create the economic backbone of Iligan CIty and Bislig, respectively.

With this drive of the national government, can we expect our own local GOCCs to start performing better in 2019?

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We hope that  the coming of Apo Agua Infrastructure as the new bulk water supplier of the Davao City Water District will increase the available water for the city, especially the areas in Cabantian and Mandug that do not have the same quality of water that matina residents enjoy. 

Since this is surface water from the Tamugan River, we are confident that   the city government thorough the City Engineer’s office and the CENRO can make sure that solid waste from the Barangays in the areas around the Tamugan River are adequately collected to prevent them from going into the river, which will be the main source of water in the near future.