By BERNIE CAHILES-MAGKILAT
The Board of Investments, the country’s premier investment generation and promotion agency, yesterday reported that it registered ₱1.14 trillion in new projects in 2019, highest in its 52-year history.
The amount is 24.67 percent higher than the agency’s investment haul of ₱914.960 billion in 2018. These committed investments represent the project cost of 376 projects that were registered in 2019 that reflect a modest 1.35 percent increase from 371 projects approved in 2018.
Of the total registered committed investments, ₱335.740 billion came from foreign investors, which dramatically increased by 222.93 percent from ₱103.967 billion in 2018.
In contrast, Filipino businessmen only increased its investments by .74 percent to ₱804.976 billion from ₱810.993 billion they committed to invest in 2018.
Once in commercial operation, the approved new investments are expected to employ 61,622 workers or a 10.55 percent lower than the 68,891 jobs supposedly to be created from the 2018 projects.
Meantime, DTI Secretary Ramon M. Lopez said the agency is targeting a conservative 10 percent increase in investments inflow in 2020 amid encouraging global economic outlook following the initial phase of trade agreement between the US and China that could end the debilitating trade war.
Lopez said the growth target for the year was just similar to their 10 percent growth target in 2019. He expects more projects to register in 2020.
For this year, Lopez expressed optimism for both the local economy and global economies as the US and China are starting to resolve their trade dispute.
“There is optimism with the signing of the phase 1,” Lopez told reporters covering the 71st MAP Inaugural Meeting where Lopez was the keynote speaker.
Calling it a step in the right direction, Lopez said the signing of the initial trade deal between the two economic heavyweights has eased the tension and removed the uncertainties in the business community.