The Board of Investments (BoI) is aiming to approve P680 billion worth of investments this year, 10 percent higher than last year’s record P617 billion, a senior Trade department official said on Monday.
“We are targeting P680 billion [in]investments this year. We continue to collaborate and monitor those investors who have expressed interest to invest in the Philippines, particularly the big industrial projects coming from the presidential visits [abroad],” Trade Undersecretary and Board of Investments (BoI) managing head Ceferino Rodolfo told reporters.
“We will now see the entry of those who are doing feasibility and technical studies, in particular those in the areas of steel making, petrochem, shipbuilding, and other big ticket industrial projects,” he added.
BoI investment approvals hit an all-time high last year, surpassing the P500-billion target and the previous peak of P570.1 billion posted in 1997. The investments were said to be mainly in infrastructure and power.
Companies that have expressed interest in investing include Chinese firms Huili Investment Fund Management Co., Ltd. and Yi Ding Tai International Corp., which have expressed a desire to respectively put up steel manufacturing and shipbuilding facilities worth $4.5 billion.
Huili, in a letter of intent endorsed by China’s Ministry of Commerce, said it wanted to partner with local firms for a two-phase steel factory that is expected to employ 6,000 people by 2022.
Yi Ding Tai, meanwhile, was said to have selected the Philippines as the best location for the development of a shipbuilding and ship repair facility. The facility is expected to employ at least 2,000 people by 2022.
Rodolfo said that continued manufacturing sector growth underpinned this year’s higher investment target.
“We foresee a continuous strong growth in the manufacturing sector. You will see that the manufacturing sector’s contribution to GDP is also increasing,” he said.
“This would attract more investments, both foreign and local, as the growth in the manufacturing sector will be driven by the strong growth of domestic consumption in particular those areas that are infrastructure-related and construction related,” he added.
“When I say it’s construction-related, it is not only public but also housing like condominium units.”