Home Economy PEZA pitches PHL to more potential Japanese locators

PEZA pitches PHL to more potential Japanese locators

THE Philippine Economic Zone Authority (PEZA) said it is making a bid for more Japanese investment in the Philippines as the pandemic disrupts supply chains for manufacturers worldwide.

“The Philippines takes pride in our young Filipino workforce with high proficiency in the English language, are college graduates, dependable and hardworking,” PEZA Director General Charito B. Plaza said in a statement on Monday.

Japanese companies consider job one to be building new supply chains, with their Manila-based ambassador calling tech, communications, and startups their key focus areas.

Japanese Ambassador to the Philippines Koshikawa Kazuhiko was quoted as saying that the priority for Japanese companies is “building a strong supply chain and realizing a free and fair trade and investment environment,” which he said “Japan and the Philippines (need to work on in order to) solve the universal problem of economic recovery brought by the ongoing pandemic.”

“We want to take investment opportunities in the field of science and technology, as well as in semiconductors and communication fields, promote startup support, and develop human resources,” he added.

Ms. Plaza met virtually with the Japanese business community during a forum late last week.

She told Japanese businesses that the Philippines’ goal is to “catalyze industrial growth” by establishing more economic zones.

“To date, we have 962 Japanese locator companies among our 4,670 registered companies,” Ms. Plaza said.

“These companies are engaged in warehousing and storage, fabricated metal products, rubber and plastic products, radio, television, and communication equipment and apparatus, as well as software development,” she added.

Ms. Plaza noted that PEZA-registered Japanese businesses account for P727.679 billion in investment and employ 353,763 workers.

They also “contribute $11.065 billion in exports” to the economy, she said.

Philippine Ambassador to Japan Jose C. Laurel V said Japan is one of the Philippines’ “most significant” trade, investment, and development assistance partners.

“For the first semester of 2021, year on year, Japan was our second (largest) trade partner, the second-largest investment source, and the top official development assistance (ODA) bilateral contributor,” he said. — Arjay L. Balinbin