March 24, 2023

The Baguio City Council has approved on first reading a proposed ordinance that would remove the restriction on the conduct of trade fairs in city-owned or city-managed public parks, roads, and facilities.
The proposed ordinance shall amend Section 2 of Ordinance 12, s. 2012, (further amending the Trade Fair Ordinance of 1994).
Section 2 of the existing ordinance indicates the conduct of trade fairs for a period of not exceeding 15 days is allowed only in “suitable” private places.
However, the phrase “in suitable private places only and to totally disallow the conduct of trade fairs and other similar activities in all city-owned or city-managed public parks, including government owned and controlled property and facilities” in Section 2 is removed in the proposed amendment.
The proposed revision of Section 2 reads as follows: “It is hereby declared a policy of the Local Government of Baguio to regulate trade fairs in the City of Baguio by allowing the conduct of trade fairs that promote agricultural, industrial, indigenous and commercial products, crafts and other merchandise through inter-regional trading that will foster better livelihood opportunities, enhance local tourism, and help advance economic development for a period of not exceeding 15 days in suitable private places and city-owned or city managed public parks, including government-owned and controlled properties, roads, and facilities.” 
The explanatory note of the proposed ordinance states the amendment seeks to “further spur such activities (trade fairs) here in the city and in order to help alleviate the plight of micro, small, medium scale entrepreneurs.”
“The adverse economic situation as an effect of the Covid-19 pandemic compelled various personalities and organizations to showcase and promote their products and services to the general public through trade fair activities,” the explanatory note reads.
Also, the amendatory ordinance, once enacted, shall no longer require trade fair exhibit organizers to do the following: register with the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR); submit a BIR clearance as a requirement; and furnish BIR a copy of the terminal report detailing the activities undertaken, issues or problems encountered, and sales performance per exhibitor/participant.
The proposed ordinance has been referred to the city council’s committee on market, trade, commerce, and agriculture for review. – Jordan G. Habbiling