These are exciting times for business and investors in the Philippines, with the country firmly on track to permanent economic growth and stability.
With this as the defining theme of her three-day investment mission here, President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo regaled top American leaders with the bright prospects of doing business in the Philippines.
“I believe the Philippines offers one of the best values in Asia for domestic and foreign investors,” the President told the US business executives during the Outsourcing Summit: Roadmap 2010 held at the Starlight Rooftop of Waldorf Astoria Towers Thursday evening (Sept. 27, New York time).
She pointed out that the Philippines is ranked as one of the most attractive off-shoring destinations in the world not only in terms of cost competitiveness, but more importantly the “country’s highly trainable, English-proficient management manpower.”
No less than the International Monetary Fund (IMF) in its 2007 Global Sourcing Study cited the Philippines as the No. 2 “most preferred offshoring destination after India,” the President said.
The difference is that India has a billion population from which it draws its offshoring manpower compared to the Philippine population of 80 million, she added.
Now the fastest growing sector of the economy, the $3.6- billion business services industry has created 300,000 new jobs since 2000, the President said.
She pointed out that after years of sluggish if not negative growth, the Philippine economy has registered some of the strongest macroeconomic fundamentals in two decades.
“Six years ago, no one thought we could get more revenues, cut down on tax cheats, strengthen the peso and move the stock market. And no one thought we could bring our budget into balance, which we did last month, lower our debts and raise employment, but we have,” the President said.
She said that the heavy investment inflow into the Philippines has been anchored by the billion dollar plus investments by several major international corporations, among them Texas Instruments, Hanjin of South Korea, Marubeni and Tokyo Electric of Japan and AES of the US.
The upsurge of investments is taking place across a broad spectrum of the economy and her administration is working to ensure that the inflows will be sustained, she added.
“We are committed to consolidating the gains in the new revenue by making long overdue investments in human and physical infrastructure” by pouring billions of pesos into education, healthcare, skills training, new roads, bridges and ports to further raise the level of competitiveness of the Philippines, the President said.
She urged those who have invested in the Philippines to “continue to do so. And to those of you who are just getting to know the Philippines, we urge you to come and explore all that the country has to offer you and your business.”
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