THE Philippines has bagged the Investments Project Award for Asia during the recent Annual Investment Meeting (AIM), a leading global forum for investment and strategic networking in Dubai, United Arab Emirates (UAE).
The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) received the trade and investments promotions award for the San Carlos Bronzeoak project, DTI Undersecretary Ponciano Manalo, Jr. told reporters on Monday night.
The San Carlos Bronzeoak project aims to develop and implement renewable energy projects in the Philippines. With a background in agribusiness and land development, the project is involved in biofuel, biomass and solar energy technologies.
“This is a strong confirmation that the Philippines has been attracting the best investment projects in recent years that contribute to the country’s remarkable and sustainable economic growth,” the DTI said.
The award is a significant feature of the investment meeting and has become a widely appreciated recognition of best investments promotion agencies (IPAs).
The AIM is a three-day event focused on foreign direct investments (FDIs). It provides various platforms for key stakeholders from the government and the private sector to interact and present their investment projects, programs and opportunities.
Headed by Manalo, the Philippine delegation was composed of 44 representatives from 20 IPAs, local government units (LGUs), private businesses, and business organizations. The mission was organized by the DTI and the Board of Investments in collaboration with the Philippine Embassy in the UAE.
A total of 96 ready-to-go investments projects and business proposals were offered to potential investors. These projects are in line with the focused sectors that the delegation intends to promote in the Middle East.
These sectors are manufacturing, agribusiness, industrial estate development, tourism, infrastructure, logistics and energy.
During the country presentation attended by a hundred participants from the UAE and other countries, Manalo underscored the impressive investment climate of the Philippines.
He also discussed specific industry and project opportunities in various IPAs, and the vast growth potential of Mindanao, specifically on halal products, infrastructure, and industrial estate development projects.
Manalo said that to be proficient in halal certification and exports will be very good for Mindanao. “That’s our food basket. Nestle are already providing halal-certified products to the region,” he said.
“In the UAE they are bullish on food production and agri-processing. It is a serious want or need. They have to get their food source from outside,” he said.
“That is why we need to develop. I’m taking that as advocacy in halal certification. You have a ready market for inclusive growth,” he added.
The Zamboanga Economic Zone is very much keen to create an ecozone one-stop shop for halal, the DTI official added.
He said that the food market for halal-certified products in the Middle East is around $600 billion.
“Imagine, if you capture at least one percent, that is $6 billion. Your GDP is $290 billion. If you get that market share, that is 2 percent growth in GDP already. That is one percent only in food (exports), there is an additional 2-3 percent in other halal products,” Manalo said.