By Antonio Colina
DAVAO CITY – Foreign direct investments (FDI) in the Davao Region surged to P1.823 billion in 2019, an increase of 43-percent as compared to the P1.274.7 billion recorded in 2018, according to the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA).
Davao Region, which is comprised of the provinces of Davao del Norte, Davao del Sur, Davao Occidental, Davao Oriental, Davao de Oro, and chartered City of Davao, posted the second-highest FDI in Mindanao only after Northern Mindanao.
The five-province Northern Mindanao recorded a major drop in foreign investments from P64.6 billion in 2018 to P2.6 billion last year.
Davao City Chamber of Commerce and Industry Inc. (DCCCII) president John Carlo Tria said the increase in FDIs showed that “investors are attracted to us and our investment potentials.”
Tria expressed confidence the growth would continue this year as more infrastructure and connectivity projects are currently being built.
National Economic Development Authority (NEDA)-Davao director Maria Lourdes Lim earlier said they projected the region to grow between 9.5 percent and 10.5 percent for 2019 despite a series of major earthquakes last year that affected the property development sector, one of its major growth drivers.
The PSA is expected to release a report on the Davao’s economic performance by March this year, she said.
Lim said that the macroeconomic fundamentals of the region, which is comprised of five provinces, six cities, and 43 municipalities, had remained stable at the end of 2019.
Data from PSA also revealed that Soccsksargen’s FDI grew by nearly three folds from P106.3 million in 2018 to P280.1 million last year, while Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM) posted P306.9 million in foreign investments last year from P235.1 million in 2018.
The PSA did not provide data for Zamboanga Peninsula and Caraga regions.
Overall, the country’s approved foreign investments P390.110 billion in 2019, growing by 112-percent from P183 billion recorded in 2018.
This growth in investment pledges came from the seven investment promotion agencies (IPAs), namely: Board of Investments (BOI), Clark Development Corporation (CDC), Philippine Economic Zone Authority (PEZA), and Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority (SBMA) as well as the Authority of the Freeport Area of Bataan (AFAB), BOI-Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BOI-BARMM), and Cagayan Economic Zone Authority (CEZA), according to PSA.
Investments from Singapore valued at P176.362 billion accounted for 45.2-percent of the total approved FDIs. China came second highest at P88.674 billion or 22.7-percent of the total FDIs, followed by South Korea (P41.479 billion) and Japan (P19.885.7 billion)