Pimentel: No one accountable if Maharlika fund fails

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, May 29) — A senator on Monday warned that no one will be held responsible in the event that the proposed Maharlika fund fails.

“Nothing because an investment can fail because they can claim it was a good faith and sound investment. So nothing, no one will get punished because sasabihin nila (they will say), well, that's the business cycle. You win some, you lose some,” Senate Minority Leader Koko Pimentel told CNN Philippines’ The Source.

Amid calls to further study the establishment of the fund, President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. certified the Maharlika Investment Fund bill as urgent.

Senate President Juan Miguel Zubiri said they are hoping to pass the proposed measure this week before Congress goes on a two-week break.

The billions of pesos to be allocated for the Maharlika fund will be used to implement projects that will boost the economy, like infrastructure programs.

Part of the funds will be sourced from the Landbank of the Philippines and the Development Bank of the Philippines.

Pimentel warned that the failure of the Maharlika fund may lead to the collapse of banking institutions.

“If we lose everything, ‘yan ang nakakatakot (that's scary). Will it now lead to the collapse of the Landbank? Will it lead to the collapse of the Development Bank of the Philippines?” he pointed out.

Authorities should also keep an eye on a possible bank contagion that is currently happening in countries like the United States and Switzerland, he added.

Bank contagion refers to risks that financial difficulties at one or more banks spill over to other banks or the whole financial system.

Pimentel emphasized there is no compelling need to rush the approval of the bill. Further study is what should be done as it already diverted from the original proposal, he noted.