DTI: PBBM’s trip boosted foreign investments growth

By Kris Crismundo

February 19, 2024, 10:02 pm

<p><em>File photo</em></p>

File photo

MANILA – Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) Secretary Alfredo Pascual on Monday said the official foreign trips of President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr. has boosted the growth in foreign investments in the country.

Pascual made the statement following the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas’ (BSP) report that net foreign direct investments (FDI) inflows in November 2023 rebounded by 27.8 percent amounting to USD1 billion, bringing the 11-month net FDI inflows to USD7.6 billion.

The Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) also reported last week that investment pledges from foreign sources surged 127.2 percent in the fourth quarter of 2023 to PHP394.45 billion.

“Indeed, we are making it happen in the Philippines. The pipeline of projects initiated during President Marcos Jr.'s presidential visits, along with the goodwill fostered, is starting to yield tangible results, as shown by the latest FDI report from BSP. From January to November last year, we observed a substantial rise in FDIs in manufacturing and a significant surge in FDIs originating from Germany,” Pascual said.

“Certainly, the presidential visits have been impactful for the Philippine economy, signaling to both local entrepreneurs and foreign investors alike the government's commitment to fostering a conducive environment for economic prosperity. The Philippines has become a premier investment destination for foreign businesses in Asia,” he added.

The DTI chief earlier said Marcos targets the Philippines to be the second top destination of FDIs in Southeast Asia by the end of his term in 2028.

“We will keep our momentum to make more investments happen in the Philippines by turning investment pledges from presidential visits into reality. Each presidential visit is important and sets a foundation for us to build a pipeline of investment opportunities that will translate to job generation for our countrymen,” Pascual added.

Meanwhile, in a roundtable discussion Monday, ING senior economist Nicholas Mapa said the recent laws passed by the Congress that ease foreign restrictions in investing in various sectors in the country has helped in bringing in more foreign investors into the country.

“The Philippines just has a good story to tell in terms of growth outlook. The government should work ways to lower inefficiencies, infrastructure, lower power costs. I think all those will go hand-in-hand in bringing or increasing our attractiveness as an FDI destination,” Mapa said.

While Congress is still debating whether to amend the Constitution to further relax economic restrictions, the economist said addressing other challenges in doing business in the country can also drive the country’s attractiveness as destination for foreign investments. (PNA)