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Saturday, December 2, 2023

Diokno: Now is the best time for US companies to invest in PH

Finance Secretary Benjamin Diokno asked American and global business communities to invest in the Philippines which has solid macroeconomic fundamentals and bright prospects.

Diokno, chairman of the Economic Development Cluster, said during the Philippine Economic Briefing in New York City on Sept. 22 that the Marcos administration was determined to explore new frontiers with investors from the US and the rest of the world.

“This is why we believe that this is the best time to do business in the Philippines,” Diokno said in a presentation.

The economic briefing was part of President Ferdinand Marcos, Jr.’s six-day working visit to the US in a bid to drum up foreign investments in the Philippines.

The US, with a total trade of $108.7 billion from 2016 to 2021, ranked as the Philippines’ third-largest trading partner and fourth top source of foreign direct investments at $1.35 billion over the same period.

It is also the Philippines’ biggest source of overseas Filipino remittances, with over 4 million Filipinos living and working in the US.

Diokno said the the government was committed to pushing the Philippines towards broad-based and sustainable growth over the next six years.

He said this goal was underpinned by the enactment of key structural reforms, the full reopening of the economy and a first-of-its-kind medium-term fiscal framework, which contains various measures that will promote fair and efficient tax administration through digitalization as well as mainstream environmental sustainability initiatives to mitigate the impact of climate change.

Digitalization will also play a key role in enhancing the efficiency of revenue collection in the country and modernizing its tax system, he said.

Diokno presented significant developments in the country’s fiscal sector, including the recent enactment of economic liberalization measures that would further widen the space for joint ventures and foreign participation in strategic industries, making the Philippines a premier investment destination in the region.

“We have set in place structural reforms to establish a business-friendly environment for both domestic and foreign investors, and we anticipate significant benefits from the implementation of these structural reforms,” he said.

Diokno said the public-private partnership arrangement would unlock more meaningful employment opportunities for the Filipino people and reduce poverty incidence in the long run.

He said the Marcos administration remained vigilant and ready to respond to global economic headwinds and pressing issues brought about by the pandemic and the ongoing Russia-Ukraine conflict.

Both near-term and medium-term priorities are comprehensively outlined in the government’s 8-point socioeconomic agenda which will guide the country towards a faster, greener, and more inclusive growth.

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