Taiwan firm plans to expand PH operations

Published March 10, 2021, 6:30 AM

by Bernie Cahiles-Magkilat

Hocheng Philippines Corporation (HPC), a leading manufacturer of bathroom equipment, is planning to expand its operations in the Philippines including the assembly, promotion, and distribution of  COVID-19 screening devices.

In a statement, Trade Undersecretary and Board of Investments (BOI) Managing Head Ceferino Rodolfo said the Taiwanese-owned local unit revealed this plan during their meeting. 

At present, HPC is doing the assembly and distribution of LENUS, an anti-virus guard that requires wearing a face mask as it functions as a thermal scanner and alcohol dispenser in one. 

Photo shows DTI Undersecretary and BOI Managing Head Ceferino Rodolfo (third from left) handing over to HPC President Sam Chen (third from right) a copy of the CREATE Bill that has recently been approved by the Philippine legislative body and is now for consideration and signing of President Duterte. They are joined by BOI and HPC officials.

During the meeting with the BOI, Undersecretary Rodolfo highlighted to HPC President Sam Chen the government’s commitment to making business in the Philippines competitive.  “We have put in place incentives that create an investor-friendly landscape, allowing investors to set up their business at a lower cost. Foreign companies can also benefit from corporate income tax exemptions where new and better rates are embodied in the recently-approved Corporate Recovery and Tax Incentives for Enterprises (CREATE) Act,” said Undersecretary Rodolfo.  

CREATE Act lowers the Philippines’ corporate income tax (CIT) rate from 30 percent to 25 percent and modernizes the country’s investment incentives, making them more competitive and transparent, time-bound, targeted, and performance-based.  It also provides businesses with economic stimulus measures that will help them recover from the coronavirus pandemic.   

During the meeting, HPC demonstrated how the LENUS device works including how to refill the alcohol and configure settings such as the normal body temperature range. Undersecretary Rodolfo and other BOI officials also tried using LENUS, with the voice prompt set in the Filipino language. 

The voice prompt also alerts the users when approaching LENUS without a face mask, reminding them to wear one before entering the establishment. This feature is essential and timely to keep people around the place safe and secured upon entering.  

HPC is targeting the country’s hospitals, healthcare facilities, business establishments, and even consumer users as markets for LENUS.  

Rodolfo said that HPC’s expansion plans further amplifies the country’s competitive advantage as an ideal investment destination for the manufacturing of COVID-19-related products. “We are positioning the Philippines as a complementary host country to target companies, particularly those looking into diversifying their business locations to sustain and enhance competitiveness. HPC’s expansion plans additionally strengthens this positioning,” said Rodolfo.   

The BOI has been encouraging companies engaged in the manufacturing of COVID19-related products such as medical supplies, products, & electronic components (for medical applications) and other manufacturing subsectors such as electric equipment & appliances; information technology (IT) products, machinery & equipment, and metal products to “Make It Happen” in the Philippines.  

 “By enticing them to invest in these industries, the outcome is a win-win for both businesses and the country. While we make their enterprises grow, we attract the highly-desirable investments that will serve the public interest especially in this time of the health crisis,” said Rodolfo.  

Hocheng Corporation (HCG), the parent company of HPC, is a Taiwan-based company that manufactures and sells hygiene porcelains (toilets, water tanks, washbasins, sewage basins, and urine buckets); water supply copper wares (taps, makeup mirrors, and automotive equipment); bathtubs and table boards; toilet covers; kitchenware and ceramic plates, among others.  

HCG established HPC in 1995. Two years later, it opened a 10-hectare plant in First Cavite Industrial Estate (FCIE) in Dasmariñas City, Cavite. HPC provides total bathroom solutions as well as kitchen fixtures to diverse residential (condominiums); commercial (malls); institutional (schools, offices); and tourism/ entertainment (hotels, resorts, casinos) structures in the country. With revenues of around P1.7 billion annually, HPC has around 850 personnel in its Cavite facility.