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ECOP: Some wordings in approved anti-'endo' bill problematic, will turn off investors

The Employers Confederation of the Philippines (ECOP) on Wednesday said some wordings in the Congress-approved measure ending contractualization or 'endo' need to be addressed as the bill, if enacted into law, might discourage investors and eventually result in job losses.

While saying that Senate Bill No. 1826 is much better than its House counterpart, ECOP president Sergio Ortiz-Luis said there are still items that need to be resolved.

Asked what those items are, Ortiz-Luis told GMA News Online in a phone interview that there are concerns among employers on the definition of "labor-only contracting."

"The wordings in the bill turn off investors so these need to be addressed as we don't want to have a situation where we'll be losing a lot of investments and jobs," he said.

SB 1826 was adopted by the House of Representatives as an amendment to House Bill 6908. 

The measure prohibits subcontracting out the same work contracted out by the employer.

It also seeks to limit job contracting to licensed and specialized services and to strengthen security of tenure of employees in the private sector by classifying workers into regular and probationary employees, treating project and seasonal employees as regular employees.

Ortiz-Luis said ECOP hopes the issues will be addressed in the drafting of the implementing rules and regulations (IRR) if the measure will be enacted into law.

The measure also makes the employer and contractor jointly liable if the contractor fails to pay the wages, allowances and benefits of employees to the extent of the work performed under the contract.

Meanwhile, a labor group on Wednesday denounced the House of Representatives' adoption of SB 1826 as an amendment to House Bill 6908.

"This is not the law that the trade unions and the workers envision for many many years," Federation of Free Workers president Sonny Matula said in a statement. —KG, GMA News