THE COCA-COLA Co. (TCCC) will invest $1 billion, or around P56 billion, in the Philippines over a five-year period to sustain its domestic expansion, a company official said on Tuesday.

 “In the next five years, we’re planning for $1 billion investment, and in fact, we’ve even doing a new plant, which we are building in Tarlac,” Coca-Cola Europacific Partners Plc (CCEP) Chairperson Sol Daurella Comadrán said in a statement.

“We generate 100,000 plus (employees) throughout the distribution, through our supplies… And we’re very enthusiastic and we see, we need to invest in the Philippines, invest to grow the business,” she added.

The country’s domestic market is “full of opportunities for the company,” she said.

TCCC made the commitment following the completion of the $1.8-billion joint acquisition of Coca-Cola Beverages Philippines, Inc. (CCBPI) by Aboitiz Equity Ventures, Inc. (AEV) and CCEP on Feb. 23.

CCBPI is the bottling arm of TCCC in the Philippines. Under the joint acquisition, CCEP has a 60% stake in CCBPI while the remaining 40% is held by AEV.

“This significant investment from TCCC highlights our shared commitment to the Philippines’ growth and development. We are confident that this partnership will create lasting value for our stakeholders and contribute positively to the Philippine economy,” Aboitiz Group President and Chief Executive Officer Sabin M. Aboitiz said. 

On Tuesday, AEV shares rose by 0.31% or 15 centavos to P49.20 each. — Revin Mikhael D. Ochave