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Philippines' finance department approves REIT law implementation guidelines

The Philippines' Department of Finance approved the draft implementing rules and regulations for the country's Real Estate Investment Trust Act, The Philippine Star reported, citing unnamed industry sources.

The country's Securities and Exchange Commission is expected to release the guidelines soon following the approval, further clearing the hurdles for property companies' IPO of REIT businesses and potential investments to the sector.

In December 2019, Philippine Stock Exchange President Ramon Monzon said he expects the implementation guidelines to be released in 2020, pending receipt of approval from the SEC. The law would cut the required minimum public ownership of REITs to 33% from 67%, giving the property trusts access to tax incentives.

Ayala Land Inc. and DoubleDragon Properties Corp. have been planning to float their respective REIT businesses, while Robinsons Land Corp. is considering potential investments to the REIT market through its Altus Property Ventures Inc. subsidiary. Marco Antonio, Century Properties Group Inc.'s president and CEO, also said the company is eager to venture into the sector, noting that REITs will help funding and long-term liquidity for property companies, the Jan. 13 report added.