The Philippines remains a preferred global investment destination as evident in the investment projects registered with the Board of Investments (BOI).
Trade Secretary and BOI Chairman Ramon Lopez announced a 25% increase in the value of registered investments for the first five months of the year compared with the same period in 2016, growing from PhP137.3 Billion to PhP174.5 Billion.
The number of investment projects also rose by 70% in the January to May 2017 period, from 128 projects to 218. These projects are mostly high-impact, socially relevant, and labor intensive which are expected to generate some 51,847 in new jobs once operational or an increase of 100 percent in employment generated.
Lopez said that this positive development is a testament to the country’s sound economic fundamentals and sustained investor confidence that bodes well with the agency’s thrust to further strengthen the country’s position as a preferred global investment destination.
“It’s business as usual in the country,” said the Trade Secretary, adding that the current situation in Marawi and the recent Resorts World incident remain isolated cases and that the administration is in firm control.
The trade chief said that investment prospects in Mindanao remain rosy given the significant investment projects registered with the BOI from January to May 2017 particularly in three Mindanao regions namely Region 10 which recorded a PhP1.382 Billion worth of investment projects, Region 11 with PhP3.181 Billion, and Region 13 with PhP1.350 Billion.
Mindanao-registered projects include energy, housing, agriculture, food manufacturing, water supply and distribution, transportation and storage, and recreation. All of these are impactful, socially-relevant, and labor intensive, and are seen to improve the lives and provide gainful employment to the people of Mindanao. “With the continued confidence of investors on the viability and profitability of doing business in Mindanao, we also send a positive signal on the stability of the peace and order situation in the island group,” Lopez said.
The biggest destination of investments overall for the January to May 2017 period was Region 4A which recorded PhP92.986 Billion worth of projects followed by the National Capital Region with PhP35.863 Billion and Region 3 with PhP16.274 Billion. There were also significant investments recorded for Region 1 withPhP6.457Billion and Negros Island Region with PhP6.118 Billion in investments.
The top five foreign investments projects are from Singapore with PhP2.124 Billion, USA with PhP483.25 Million, Netherlands with PhP445.22 Million, Denmark with PhP320.84 Million, and India with PhP207.35 Million.
The increase in the value of investments was attributed mainly to the approval of real estate projects with a combined investment amount of PhP68.743Billion, followed by construction and PPP projects with PhP48.467 Billion, energy and power projects with PhP28.311 Billion, manufacturing projects with PhP15.749 Billion, and transportation and storage projects with PhP9.594 Billion.
Trade Undersecretary and BOI Managing Head CeferinoRodolfo meanwhile said the agency is on track of meeting its PhP500 Billion investment target for the year, with more investment projects expected to register with the upcoming approval of the 2017 Investment Priorities Plan (IPP) Guidelines.
“We are seeing a bullish first full-year local and foreign investment inflow with levels to reach at least PhP500 Billion from PhP441 Billion achieved in 2016,” said Undersecretary Rodolfo, adding that the new IPP, which was designed to spread the benefits of the country’s fast economic growth to the countryside with emphasis on a broader segment of the manufacturing sector, innovation-driven, and job-generating businesses, will drive the robust growth of investments especially manufacturing investment projects. Projects adopting inclusive business models will also be qualified especially those sourcing from MSMEs.
The manufacturing sector generated a total of PhP49 Billion investments in 2016 or 11 percent of total investments last year. In the first quarter of the year, the sector recorded an impressive 222.92 percent growth with investment projects amounting to PhP15.425 Billion from only PhP4.776 Billion recorded in the same period last year. Investments in the sector is expected to generate at least 3,038 in new jobs once these business projects are operational.
“The continued growth of the manufacturing industry is a clear indication of the efforts to boost growth of the sector through the Manufacturing Resurgence Program,” Undersecretary Rodolfo said adding that the revival of the manufacturing sector is key to inclusive economic growth because it will generate much-needed employment and help the country tap regional production networks.