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Donemark Calimon

Donemark Calimon is a partner and the head of Quisumbing Torres' Dispute Resolution Practice Group and the Industrials, Manufacturing & Transportation Industry Group. Donemark has 19 years of experience in dispute resolution, including civil, criminal, corporate and regulatory litigation, and commercial arbitration. He is one of the founders of the Philippine Institute of Arbitrators (PIArb) and is an accredited arbitrator of the Philippine Dispute Resolution Center, Inc. (PDRCI). He is also an accredited arbitrator of the Construction Industry Arbitration Commission (CIAC). He was appointed as Member of the Panel of Arbitrators of the Singapore International Arbitration Center (SIAC). He was also recently appointed Secretary General of the Philippine International Center for Conflict Resolution, an alternative dispute resolution (ADR) center set up by the Integrated Bar of the Philippines to provide arbitration and ADR services and facilities.

The National Economic Development Authority has issued the implementing rules and regulations of the amended Public Service Act or Republic Act No. 11659, which took effect on 4 April 2023.

The president of the Philippines has signed into law Republic Act No. 11659 (“RA 11659”), which: (a) removes foreign equity restrictions on most public service companies, except those considered as ‘public utility’ and ‘critical infrastructure’; (b) limits the scope of ‘public utility’ to public service companies involved in distribution and transmission of electricity, petroleum and petroleum products pipeline transmission systems, water pipeline distribution systems, wastewater and sewerage pipeline systems, seaports, and public utility vehicles (PUVs); and (c) limits the scope of ‘critical infrastructure’ to public service companies that own, use or operate systems and assets that are “vital to the Republic of the Philippines that the incapacity or destruction of such systems or assets would have a detrimental impact on national security, including telecommunications and other such vital services as may be declared by the President of the Philippines”.

On 3 February 2022, the Congress’ Bicameral Conference Committee approved a final version of the Bill that seeks to amend the Public Service Act with a view to limiting the foreign equity restrictions imposed by the Philippine Constitution on ‘public utilities.’

The updated Senate Bill (2094) introduces several changes to the earlier version, such as: (a) the inclusion of petroleum and petroleum products pipeline transmission or distribution systems, airports, seaports, public utility vehicles, and expressways and tollways among the list of public services considered as “public utilities,” subject to a 40% foreign ownership limit; and (b) the classification of telecommunications, air carriers, domestic shipping, railways and subways as “critical infrastructures” — not “public utilities” — which are exempt from the foreign ownership limitation but only if reciprocity is accorded to Filipino nationals through law or treaty.

READ REPORT IN ENGLISH READ REPORT IN SPANISH READ REPORT IN MANDARIN The Year Ahead – our publication looking at key developments in global litigation and arbitration for 2021 – is now available in English, Spanish and Mandarin. COVID-19 and its effects have triggered many disputes, with litigation volumes in…