PASAY CITY – On track to achieving its conservative 10% investment target growth for 2023, the Philippine Economic Zone Authority (PEZA) constantly strengthens economic ties with Japan, PEZA’s top country investor, as it seeks to attract more foreign investments in the country in line with fulfilling the number one goal of His Excellency President Ferdinand Marcos Jr.’s Administration’s 8-point socio-economic agenda.
This comes as PEZA recently concluded a strategic outbound mission to Japan last 16-22 July 2023.
Co-organized with the Aboitiz InfraCapital (AIC) Economic Estates and the Philippine Trade & Investment Centers in Osaka and Tokyo, Japan, the Philippine-Japan Investment Fora in Osaka and Tokyo offered the prospects of investing in the Philippines to several sectors such as manufacturing, IT-BPM, agro-processing, and the academe.
New and expansion project applications from Japan
PEZA Director General Tereso O. Panga reported that the investment fora in Osaka and Tokyo, Japan yielded new and expansion project applications, signifying Japan’s growing interest to continue investing and expanding operations in the Philippines.
He highlighted, “PEZA received interest both from Japanese big-ticket investors and Small and Micro Enterprises (SMEs). Most noteworthy would be the commitment of Ichijo Corporation to finalize its expansion plans in 2024, along with possible expansion plans of the ShinEtsu Corporation, OB Kogyo, Ltd., and NEC Networks & System Integration Corporation.”
According to Panga, Ichijo Corporation plans to increase its annual housing delivery capacity from 15,000 units to 20,000 units in 2024. Ichijo is poised to contribute significantly to local employment to the tune of an additional 3000-4000 new jobs to their current 23,000-strong manpower complement, creating new opportunities for skilled workers.
OB Kogyo, Ltd., a die and mold company, also expressed their intent to reinvest USD 3 million in their Philippine plant over the next 3 years, bolstering local manufacturing capabilities.
On the other hand, ShinEtsu Corporation, the global industry leader in the production and research of high-performance rare earth magnets, informed PEZA of its possible expansion plans which are dependent on the growth of the global electronic vehicle (EV) sector.
Further, aside from the garnered investment pledges during the recent outbound mission, PEZA has also approved three big-ticket Japanese investments for this year, namely, Green Energy with Torrefaction Technology, Inc., Asian Transmission Corporation, and Pricon Microelectronics, Inc. Collectively, the three investments bring in a total of PhP 20.591 billion in investments with a projected 1,973 direct workers.
PEZA Director General Panga expressed optimism, stating “These recent big-ticket investments prove that trust and confidence in investing in the Philippines, particularly from our long-standing trade partners such as Japan, are at an all-time high. Led by no less than President Marcos Jr., we will be doubling down on our aggressive and targeted approach to investment promotion.”
In his recent visit to Japan, the President lauded the Japanese for their consistent interest in the Philippines when he proclaimed on his last trip: “You (Japan) have played a major role in the Philippines’ socio-economic transformation over the past decades. When you “think Growth, think Philippines” so that together, we will reap the benefits of robust, sustainable, and inclusive growth for our businesses and for our peoples.”
Japan remains to be one of the Philippines’ largest and longest-tenured investment partners, as with PEZA, making it one of the leading sources of foreign investments.
“To date, 881 Japanese companies are registered with PEZA, bringing in Php 766.550 Billion worth of investments in the country, with exports of US$ 5.362 billion and generating up to 340,601 direct jobs for Filipinos,” noted the Director General.