Japan-PH Economic Partnership Agreement Constitutionality Affirmed by SC

“The Supreme Court Upholds the Constitutionality of JPEPA Agreement”

The Supreme Court has affirmed the constitutionality of the Japan-Philippines Economic Partnership Agreement (JPEPA), a bilateral trade and investment accord that was signed by the heads of the two countries in 2006 and ratified by the Philippine Senate in 2008.

In a decision made public on Wednesday, the SC dismissed for lack of merit two petitions challenging the constitutionality of JPEPA that was signed by then President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo and former Japanese Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi.

Among other things, the JPEPA provides that the two countries agreed to give national treatment and most-favored-nation treatment to investors of each Party.

The first petition against JPEPA was filed by the Initiatives for Dialogue and Empowerment Through Alternative Legal Services, Inc. (IDEALS, Inc), Alliance of Progressive Labor (APL), Ecological Waste Coalition of the Philippines, Mother Earth Foundation, Concerned Citizens Against Pollution, Fisheries Reform, Kilusan Para sa Pagpapaunlad ng Industriya ng Pangisdaan, Philippine Workers Alliance.

The second petition was filed by the Fair Trade Alliance, Automotive Industry Workers Alliance and several lawmakers and former senators.

In a full court decision written by Senior Associate Justice Marvic M.V.F. Leonen, the SC ruled that the petitions “have no merit.”

On the protection of the Filipinos rights to health and to a balanced and healthful ecology, the SC said that JPEPA “does not facilitate the indiscriminate importation of hazardous and toxic wastes into the Philippines.”

“Accordingly, the Petitions for Certiorari and Prohibition are dismissed for lack of merit,” the SC ruled.

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