DTI pushes for sustainable economic growth

On the look out for foreign investors in RE, plastic recycling

Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) Secretary Alfredo E. Pascual urges potential foreign investors to collaborate with the Philippines for sustainability in economic growth, such as funding technology-based plastic recycling and renewable energy (RE) projects to protect the country's natural resources. 

“We invite investors to join us on this transformative journey towards a sustainable and green future for all,” Pascual told foreign investors last Nov 16 during the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Philippines Sustainability Roundtable in San Francisco, California.

During the roundtable meeting, Pascual outlined the Philippines’ sustainable initiatives to address climate change through RE and innovative plastic recycling.

“Our agenda is set against the backdrop of escalating global climate crisis [that] is both urgent and transformative,” Pascual said.

“In the Philippines, our resolve is unyielding. We are participants in the dialogue on climate change and proactive architects of the sustainable future with renewable energy and robust recycling systems forming the twin pillars of our strategy,” he added.

During the discussions, the DTI chief presented the country’s strategic direction in advancing sustainable initiatives focused on increasing RE generation and addressing plastic pollution, aligned with the Strategic Investment Priority Plan (SIPP). 

Pascual said that economic growth has unintentionally contributed to plastic pollution, prompting the government, academia, and civil societies to actively seek waste management solutions through studies, consultations, and awareness campaigns.

He introduced legislation to combat plastic pollution like the Ecological Solid Waste Management Act of 2000 and the National Plan of Action for Marine Litter.

He added that the Philippines has also strengthened its defenses against plastic pollution this year through the landmark Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) law.

Pascual shared the EPR law's potential for multi-sectoral implementation, mandating plastic packaging producers to manage their product lifecycle, promote corporate accountability, and encourage recovery schemes, waste collection hubs, and recycling collaboration with local government units.

The DTI chief also highlighted the Philippine Energy Plan as the framework of the country's strategic direction aiming for a substantial increase in renewable energy capacity. 

Additionally, he cited the nation’s ambitious goals, targeting a 35 percent share in RE generation by 2030 and scaling up to 50 percent by 2040.  

Further, Pascual acknowledged the government's resolute legislative support, particularly Executive Order Number 18 and the CREATE Law, aimed at attracting foreign investments by providing incentives and streamlining regulations with green energy objectives. 

Supported by incentives outlined in the CREATE Act, these measures offer an enabling business environment dedicated to advancing the country's sustainability goals.  

“Together, let us forge a path where economic growth, technological innovation, and environmental stewardship intersect, ensuring a legacy of sustainability for generations to come,” Pascual said.

The APEC Philippines Sustainability Roundtable convened Northern California and Bay Area companies to discuss renewable energy and sustainability, focusing on operations in the Philippines.