ZAMBALES, Philippines — The Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority (SBMA) has again extended the business permits of Subic Bay Freeport locators whose company registration had expired since the imposition of the Luzon-wide enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) in mid-March.
SBMA Deputy Administrator for Business Kenneth Lemuel Rementilla said the SBMA will extend the validity of the Certificate of Registration (CR) and Certificate of Registration and Tax Exemption (CRTE) for 30 days, or until July 13, to give business locators enough time to renew their permits.
SBMA Chairman and Administrator Wilma Eisma approved the extension upon the recommendation of Senior Deputy Administrator for Business and Investment Renato Lee.
“In view of the continuing community quarantine imposed in the Subic Bay Freeport, Chairman Eisma further extended the validity of the CRs and CRTEs of Subic Bay Freeport locators until July 13, 2020,” Rementilla said.
Rementilla said the latest extension effectively granted a 120-day validity extension for business registrations since the Subic Bay Freeport operated under quarantine rules starting March 17.
He said that during a referendum on March 20, the SBMA board of directors initially approved to grant a 30-day reprieve to freeport enterprises whose registration would have expired within the ECQ period, or from March 17 to May 13, as well as to those whose CR or CRTE expired prior to the ECQ but had already applied for renewal before March 17.
This extension also applied to sub-lessees whose sublease would have expired during the ECQ period, provided that no protest was received from the sub-lessor during the extended period, Rementilla added.
Following the initial extension, Eisma – who was authorized by the SBMA board to further extend the validity as needed and pursuant to national government directives – first granted an extension until June 13.
Prior to this, the SBMA had suspended the collection of penalties and other fees from business locators and residents until the end of June to help ease their financial difficulties during the pandemic.
The extension covered penalties on late payment of billings, fees on deferment of deposit for maturing post-dated checks, and due dates covering payment schemes with deed of undertaking, which were all initially suspended from March to May 2020.
The SBMA had similarly granted a validity extension for the IDs and access passes of Subic Bay Freeport workers until June 30. It also allowed vehicle decals with one-year validity issued in 2019, to be renewed until July 31.
Access to the Subic Bay Freeport was relaxed starting June 1, as more businesses resumed operations under general community quarantine (GCQ). It will remain under GCQ until June 30. – Rappler.com
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