BOI cites strong interest from US companies

Published June 23, 2021, 7:00 AM

by Bernie Cahiles-Magkilat

There has been strong interest from American firms to invest in the Philippines from manufacturing, infrastructure and services, according to the top official of the Board of Investments (BOI).

At the virtual Philippines-US Make It Happen In the Philippines Business Dialogue, BOI Managing Head Ceferino S. Rodolfo said they received lots of interest from American firms following the passage of the CREATE Law after two years of waiting. The CREATE Law is seen as a game changer in the race to attract foreign direct investments because of its competitive tax and fiscal incentives regime.

“It’s well worth the wait. In terms of private sector interest from US companies, we have seen strong interest,” said Rodolfo adding “There’s been strong interest from American companies from a range of manufacturing, all the way to infrastructure and services.”

Rodolfo did not identify these firms but said there have been US firms requests for more information about opportunities in the Philippines. 

For instance, he said, highly innovative projects such as those involving AI. 

BOI has also been getting a lot of a lot of queries when it comes to hyper scaler data centers, and logistics to complement what has been the approach of the US government in terms of really securing sustainable resilient supply chains. 

In addition, he cited of a strong interest from highly innovative labor intensive companies in the electronics sector, which are trying to look at the Philippines as an alternative or complimentary location for their factories here in Asia.

Already, he said, the BOI has registrations for third party telco towers investors.

Meantime, Trade and Industry Secretary Ramon M. Lopez noted the quality of the American investments in the Philippines. “More than the figures, the nature and quality of investments from American companies and the business partnerships being formed with local companies have helped move the Philippines up the value chain,” said Lopez. 

The US is Philippines top source of investments with many major American companies that have established operations in the country. These include ON Semiconductors, Concentrix, Procter & Gamble, Johnson & Johnson, Texas Instruments Inc., JP Morgan Chase, and Google Services Philippines Inc., among many others.

Moreover, the trade chief pointed out that the US remained an important trading partner and investment source for the Philippines in areas such as electronics, transport and storage, administrative and support services, manufacturing, real estate and IT-BPM. 

In terms of trade, the US was the Philippines third major trading partner and its second top export market and fourth top import source.