2023 April 29
Philippine Economic Zone Authority Deputy Director General Aleem Siddiqui Guiapal during the Saturday News Forum.
MANILA – The Philippine Economic Zone Authority (PEZA) sees an increased confidence among local and foreign investors to start or expand their operations in the Philippines with President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr.’s official visit to the United States next week.
During a media forum in Quezon City on Saturday, PEZA Deputy Director General Aleem Siddiqui Guiapal cited the long-term impact of the President’s foreign visits to PEZA’s thrust to lure more investors into the country.
“The impact of the presence of the President in the United States really strengthened iyong (the) confidence po ng ating mga investor na mag-invest dito sa Pilipinas (of investors to go to the Philippines),” Guiapal said.
The PEZA chief said despite the challenges, they see the positive imaging being created by the Chief Executive via his foreign visits as an important factor in introducing the Philippines to the global market.
“Katulad nga po ng kanyang state visit this coming April 30 to May 4 sa United States. Iyon po iyong political will na binabanggit natin na kung saan, when there’s good governance, there’s political will. Iyong mga challenges na nabanggit natin sa energy sector napupunan po iyon ng mga sistemang pinapanukala ng ating pamahalaan (Like his state visit this coming April 30 to May 4 to the United States. That is the political will we are talking about wherein, when there’s good governance, there’s political will, the challenges we mentioned in the energy sector that will be covered by the system recommended by the government),” Guiapal pointed out.
During the President’s US visit, Guiapal said the Philippine government will be carrying several messages to American investors that include coherence and a whole-of-the-ecosystem approach.
Several government agencies such as PEZA, the Department of Trade and Industry, and the Board of Investments, are working together to harmonize the country’s investment strategy to attract more foreign businesses, Guiapal added.
Guiapal cited that with President Marcos’ leadership, PEZA registered in the last quarter of 2022 around PHP140 billion in investments, with the total number of foreign direct investment inflow coming from the US at around USD10.5 million.
PEZA employs close to 400,000 employees within the economic zone and plans to increase the number of personnel by 10 percent, Guiapal said.
Among the country’s major investors are Japan, domestic businesses, US, European Union, and South Korea, Guiapal said.