DTI eyes Qatar investments for cooling systems, dairy factory

The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) is exploring investment opportunities with two Qatari firms to boost dairy production and cooling system manufacturing in the Philippines. 

DTI Secretary Alfredo Pascual met with officials from Qatar district cooling system (DCS) provider Qatar Cool and food brand Baladna to discuss potential partnerships during the Qatar Economic Forum (QEF) on May 16. 

Pascual met with Qatar Cool Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Yasser Al Jaidah and Commercial and Finance Director Mohannad Khader to follow up on possibly establishing DCS in the country, and partnering with major district-wide or township developers locally. 

DTI calls on Qatar Cool to explore district cooling system opportunities in PH Photo 1.jpg
Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) Secretary Fred Pascual and Qatar Cool (QC) Chief Executive Officer Yasser Al Jaidah. 

“The DTI, together with relevant stakeholders, is committed to supporting Qatar Cool’s exploration of the Philippine market. The Department of Energy (DOE) will further assess QC's business model for potential Board of Investment (BOI) endorsement,” Pascual said in a statement on May 17. 

According to DTI, Qatar Cool had already visited the Philippines to scout for locations in March this year, and have conducted meetings with stakeholders. 

The Philippine party recommended townships or dense communities outside of the National Capital Region (NCR), particularly sites that house offices or workspaces for the information technology and business process management (IT-BPM) sector, that could benefit from the DCS. 

With Qatar Cool's cost- and energy-efficient solutions, the agency also encouraged the firm to contribute to developing the cooling systems in the country's current priority infrastructure projects, namely the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) and New Manila International Airport (NMIA). 

“The DTI looks forward to further discussions with Qatar Cool and facilitating their successful investment journey in the Philippines, which can contribute significantly to the country's energy efficiency goals,” Pascual added. 

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Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) Secretary Fred Pascual and Baladna Board Member Aidan Tynan.

Meanwhile, Pascual and Baladna Board Member Aidan Tynan discussed the potential establishment of a dairy facility in the Philippines, given the local demand for dairy products with almost P3 billion imports recorded. 

The Trade Secretary also noted the Philippines’ support and compliance to Philippine National Standards (PNS) on labeling fresh milk, UHT milk, and imported frozen milk concentrate. 

The National Dairy Authority (NDA) and Food and Drug Administration (FDA) will also continue to discuss and review the PNS, said the DTI. 

“The Philippine government stands ready to support Baladna to realize its planned investments in the country. Through a whole of government approach, the DTI and the Board of Investments are ready to facilitate business-to-business meetings and introductions to potential joint venture partners for Baladna. Additionally, the Department of Agriculture (DA) is actively identifying suitable locations for the proposed dairy facilities,” Pascual said.

The agency will also help the DA make policies to create a “level playing field” for all milk and dairy producers in the country, he added.