BOI, IFC partners to attract more investments

By Kris Crismundo

October 4, 2018, 2:53 pm

MANILA -- The Board of Investments (BOI) and the International Finance Corp. (IFC) forged a partnership with the end goal of attracting more foreign direct investments (FDIs) into the country.

The BOI announced on Thursday that its managing head, Trade Undersecretary Ceferino Rodolfo, and IFC Country Manager Jane Yuan Xu had signed a memorandum of understanding last Sept. 21 for the further development of investment policy, industrial promotion, and local supplier linkages in the country.

The signing was also witnessed by DTI Assistant Secretary Rafaelita Aldaba and IFC Senior Private Sector Specialist Farsida Lasida Adji.

Under the MOU, the IFC will support the Philippine government in implementing its Inclusive Innovation Industrial Strategy or the i3S by providing technical assistance and advisory support to the BOI.

The BOI-IFC partnership will push for an FDI-centric industrial promotion, at the core of which, is to reposition the Philippines as a competitive location for business operations of foreign investors, the BOI said.

In particular, the project targets to focus on sectors of electronics, automotive and electric vehicles, and aerospace.

Under the partnership, BOI and IFC will also tap the Philippine Economic Zone Authority, Semiconductor and Electronics Industries in the Philippines, Electronic Industries Association of the Philippines, Inc., Chamber of Automotive Manufacturers in the Philippines, Electric Vehicles Association of the Philippines, and the Aerospace Industry Association of the Philippines.

The BOI wants to attract more FDIs, particularly in the manufacturing sector, as the country is preparing for the industrial revolution or known as the Industry 4.0.

“Industry 4.0 is potentially disruptive and poses a challenging task on how to sustain not only the level of FDI inflows but also the growth of manufacturing and services in the economy,” said Aldaba.

“We have to be ready on how to offset these challenges and disruption with new strategies and interventions tailor-made for industries so that they will able to maintain their growth and competitiveness,” the trade official added.

New technologies that will be brought in by foreign investors will innovate industries and further help the country to increase its participation in the global value chains.

“Since the i3S is designed to improve competition and innovation in the Philippine industry, the country will be able to capitalize on the opportunities due to rapid globalization and the dizzying development of automation, robotics and artificial intelligence,” Rodolfo noted.

In the first semester of the year, investment approvals from foreign sources at the BOI surged by 165 percent to PHP14.5 billion from PHP5.5 billion in the same period in 2017. (PNA)