MANILA – The Board of Investments (BOI) is confident of hitting the PHP1-trillion mark investment approvals this year after the setbacks that happened in 2021 due to the pandemic.
Trade Secretary and BOI chair Ramon Lopez is optimistic about the outlook following the improvements in foreign investments in the country.
“Buoyed by 2021 FDI (foreign direct investments) results as well as the healthy pipeline of strong investment leads —both foreign and domestic, and with the reforms that we are anticipating to still be passed in the next months, we are confident of hitting PHP1 trillion in BOI approved investments this year,” Lopez said in a statement Tuesday.
In BOI alone, foreign investments increased to PHP151.8 billion in 2021, higher by 218 percent than the 2020 figure.
The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) also reported that FDI in the country for January to October 2021 period rose 48 percent to USD8.1 billion from the same period in 2020.
Trade Undersecretary and BOI managing head Ceferino Rodolfo said the BOI missed its 2021 investment approval target due to stricter travel protocols globally amid the surge brought by Delta variant.
“Because of the global surge in the Delta variant and now with the emergence of the Omicron variant, these resulted in global setbacks in economic recovery, which then translated to the implementation of stricter protocols in the country. We were hit hard during the second quarter and the early part of the third quarter last year,” Rodolfo said.
The BOI fell short of its PHP905-billion target investment approvals last year, as total approved investments, including Fiscal Incentives Review Board (FIRB) approvals, only amounted to PHP655.4 billion, according to BOI’s data.
These investments comprise of 235 projects that are expected to generate 46,836 fresh jobs.
The trade officials said the legislative reforms liberalizing the economy, such as the recently signed Retail Trade Liberalization Law as well as the timely passage of the Public Service Act and the Foreign Investments Act, will help the country to attract more investments. (PNA)