SyCipLaw Bulletin # 7: SEC, BSP, IPO, PEZA, ARTA, IC, PCC Issuances Relating to the COVID-19 Pandemic

A. On March 20, 2020, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) set out guidelines on the submission of the GIS, audited financial statements (AFS), and all other general and special forms and letter (Submitted Documents) via electronic mail (email) during the “state of public health emergency where the country has been placed under Enhanced Community Quarantine (ECQ)” by the Philippine President.

B. Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP, the PH Central Bank) issued BSP Circular No. 1080 (Operational relief measures for foreign exchange transactions under the Manual of Regulations on Foreign Exchange Transactions, as amended) dated 27 March 2020 provides relief measures for foreign exchange transactions, including registration of foreign/foreign currency loans and foreign investments and sale of foreign currency by BSP-authorized agent banks.

C. Anti-Red Tape Authority issued ARTA Advisory No. 1, Series of 2020 (Advisory for the Adoption of Fast-Track Measures During the COVID-19 State of Calamity) dated March 25, 2020, lists suggested measures and tools that government agencies in the executive department, local government units, government-owned or-controlled corporations, and other government instrumentalities (government agencies) can adopt to simplify and streamline the delivery of government services during the ECQ.

D. The Insurance Commission issued IC Circular Letter (CL) No. 2020-18 (Guidelines Regarding the Extension of Grace Period of All Insurance, Pre-Need and HMO Policies/Plans/Agreements due to COVID-19 Coronavirus Outbreak in the Philippines) dated March 23, 2020 which strongly encourages insurers to extend the grace period for premium payments that remain unpaid during the period of March 15 to April 13 or up to a later date deemed appropriate by the company, by at 31 days.

The bulletin was prepared by SyCipLaw partners Leah C. AbutanVicente D. Gerochi IVVida M. Panganiban-AlindoganHiyasmin H. Lapitan, and Rose Marie M. King-Dominguez, with the assistance of associate, Miguel Franco T. Dimayacyac, and legal assistants, Severino Miguel B. Sanchez and Maria Francesca S. Vergara.

The full text of the bulletin can be found below:

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