MANILA -- The Philippine economic prospects have been fairing significantly based on different economic and trade reports with the United Nations calling the Philippines “a rising star in foreign direct investments”, Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said on Monday, November 6.

“The Philippines is expected to have significantly better trade prospects for 2017 according to United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia Pacific (UNESCAP) in the Asia-Pacific Trade and Investment Report 2017: Channeling Trade and Investment into Sustainable Development,” Roque said in a press briefing in Malacañan Palace.

“The positive outlook is a result of the improved services export performance, 58.6 percent year-on-year increase in the telecommunication services and 11.3 percent growth in the number of international tourist arrivals,” he added.

He said UNESCAP considered the Philippines as a rising star because of the 60 percent growth in the county’s foreign direct investment (FDI) inflows and simplified procedures for foreign investments contributed to the positive forecast.

He also said the report approved of the streamlining of services such as the releasing of business permits and licensing system of the country.

Roque also welcomed another report which said that the Philippine manufacturing sector being ahead of other member countries of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN).

“The Nikkei Philippine Manufacturing Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) reported that the country’s manufacturing sector got a score of 53.7 for the month of October, which is higher than last month’s score of 50.8. This makes the Philippines on top of ASEAN countries in overall growth ranking in manufacturing sector,” he said.

He noted that the growth in manufacturing sector is attributed to the strengthened domestic demand and maintained export sales, increased volumes of firm production and availability of more capital equipment.

On the international front, Roque also welcomed UNHCR’s recognition on the Philippines’ efforts on refugee welfare with the UN body commending the country for its continuous support to protect refugees.

“The Department of Justice, which leads 15 other agencies of the government, signed an interagency agreement that would give legal ground for asylum seekers, refugees, stateless persons and other persons of concerns to avail of government services they need in the country,” he said.

“This proves that Filipinos are hospitable people who would warmly welcome travellers and tourists extend the same warmth and support to refugees and asylum seekers,” he added. (PND)