This paper showcases two urban local authorities in the Philippines: Quezon City and Dagupan City. The former is a premier local government authority in the Manila Metropolitan area and the latter is a second class city in terms of income and is located north of Manila. The paper examines closely their regulatory systems, focusing on their business licensing systems. It also looks into the issues, problems and concerns in regulating the operations of business establishments and enterprises in the two cities. The actual practices, changes and reforms in the licensing system are documented by the paper as well as the effects of the regulatory system on the promotion of business or economic activities in the cities. There are five interrelated parts of the paper. The first section is the conceptual framework where the concepts of regulation and regulatory governance are defined as they are used in the paper. The second part presents the legal framework for local regulatory governance. It discusses the constitutional and the Local Government Code provisions relevant to the regulation and promotion of economic development. The third section focuses on the national regulatory systems. It discusses at length the roles and functions of the national government agencies, which influence or affect the operations of local governments. The fourth part presents the local regulatory systems. It dwells on the structural or economic and legal or administrative systems at the local level. Special discussion is given to the business licensing system of local government. The fifth section focuses on the case studies on Quezon City and Dagupan City, and presents a comparative perspective on the experiences of the two local authorities in terms of the practices and reforms introduced into their business licensing systems. The last part summarizes the key issues and concerns in local regulatory governance and draws some concluding remarks based on the discussions from all the sections.
Manchester, UK, CRC Working Paper, No. 92, 43 pp.