Tuesday, 13 April 2010

‘7 big winners’ to raise $75B investments for RP

By Daxim Lucas, Amy R. Remo
Philippine Daily Inquirer

MANILA, Philippines--The Philippines stands to reap its biggest investment windfall in recent history should policymakers choose to focus resources on developing over the next decade seven industries where the country is globally competitive.

According to the Joint Foreign Chambers (JFC)—a loose umbrella organization of several Philippine-based foreign chambers of commerce—these “seven big winners” are agribusiness; business process outsourcing; creative industries; infrastructure; manufacturing and logistics; mining, and tourism, medical travel and retirement.

Australia-New Zealand Chamber of Commerce president John Casey predicted that as much as $75 billion in foreign direct investments would flow into these industries from the 2010-2020 period should the government and the private sector focus on developing these industries.

A total of ten million jobs would also be created by these investments, Casey said in a briefing in Makati City Monday.

Casey based his estimate on the fact that the Philippines usually received about one percent of the total foreign direct investments that flow into the Asia-Pacific region that averaged $200 billion on any given year, thus the $75-billion estimate for the next decade.

According to the JFC, the Philippines is located in a region of “very high economic growth” that is experiencing the highest growth rate in the world at present, as far as regional economies are concerned.

In fact, thanks largely to China, the Asia-Pacific’s output, exports and employment have mostly returned to levels seen before the global financial crisis, which began almost three years ago.

“Leading the global economy, real gross domestic product growth in developing Asia is poised to rise to 8.7 percent in 2010 after slowing to 8.5 percent in 2008 and 7 percent in 2009,” the JFC said, quoting a recent World Bank report.

It pointed out that in 2008, the World Bank identified 13 economies which had sustained growth rates of 7 percent or more in the post-World War 2 period, of which eight are in Asia.

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