Thursday, June 16, 2016

DILG, PNP finalize rules on controlled chemicals

The Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) and the Philippine National Police (PNP) have recently finalized the implementing rules and regulations (IRR) in manufacturing, dealing and purchasing controlled chemicals that can be used to make explosives and explosive ingredients.

DILG Secretary Mel Senen Sarmiento said the IRR for Republic Act No. 9156 which he signed together with PNP Chief, Director General Ricardo Marquez last June 9 was based on a series of consultations with other stakeholders, including the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), the private sector and academe.

RA 9156 amended the Provisions of Presidential Decree No. 1866 which codified the laws on illegal/unlawful possession, manufacture, dealing in, acquisition or disposition of firearms, ammunition or explosives or instruments used in manufacturing them.

With the signing of the IRR, Sarmiento said the chemical industry and the manufacturing sector can now expect clearer government regulation on controlled chemicals in the country.
Controlled chemicals in the IRR refer exclusively to chlorates, nitrates, nitric acid, and such other chemicals categorized into high-risk and low-risk that can be used for the manufacture of explosives and explosive ingredients. From 101 regulated chemicals, it has been trimmed down in the IRR into 15 high-risk and 17 low-risk controlled chemicals.

Police Senior Superintendent Cesar Hawthorne R. Binag, Chief of the PNP Firearms and Explosives Office (FEO), pointed out that with the final IRR, the PNP can now monitor the ‘movement’ of controlled chemicals from manufacture, purchase, to usage.

The IRR is set to take effect fifteen days after publication in the Official Gazette on July 25, 2016.

On the other hand, DTI Secretary Adrian S. Cristobal Jr. lauded the multi-sector partnership in coming up with the IRR.

“This is all about regulatory reform and policy making that are too important to be left to the government alone. We need the participation of the private sector, academe, and civil society. We have here now a reasonable, science or evidence-based policies that benefit the economy and society without threatening national security,” he said.

Cristobal said that for the fourth quarter of 2015, when the economy grew by 6.3 percent in terms of Gross Domestic Product (GDP), the chemical industry was the fastest growing in the manufacturing.

As of 2015, there are 1,405 chemical manufacturers with 170,000 direct workers employed in this industry.

Sarmiento and Cristobal both commended the active participation and support of two private groups in drafting the IRR: the Semiconductor and Electronics Industries in the Philippines Foundation, Inc. (SEIPI) and Samahan sa Pilipinas ng mga Industriyang Kimika (SPIK) or Chemical Industries Association of the Philippines. (DILG)

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