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Business

FDI up 17% in Q1

Lawrence Agcaoili - The Philippine Star
FDI up 17% in Q1

“The sustained FDI inflows reflect investor confidence in the economy on account of continued growth prospects and strong macroeconomic fundamentals,” the central bank said. File

MANILA, Philippines - The net inflow of foreign direct investments (FDI) into the Philippines rose 17 percent to $1.56 billion in the first quarter from $1.34 billion in the same period last year as the country continues to enjoy strong macroeconomic fundamentals, according to the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP).

“The sustained FDI inflows reflect investor confidence in the economy on account of continued growth prospects and strong macroeconomic fundamentals,” the central bank said.

The Cabinet-level Development Budget Coordination Committee (DBCC) has retained the country’s gross domestic product (GDP) growth forecast at 6.5 to 7.5 percent this year from 6.9 percent last year despite a slower growth rate in the first quarter.

Weak private consumption pulled down the GDP expansion to 6.4 percent in the first quarter from 6.6 percent in the fourth quarter of last year.

Data showed equity placements plunged 70.8 percent to $191 million in the first three months from $653 million in the same period last year while withdrawals retreated 12.8 percent to $91 million from $104 million.

Equity capital infusion came mostly from Japan, the US, Singapore, Hong Kong, and Germany. These placements were largely invested in real estate; wholesale and retail trade; manufacturing; financial and insurance; as well as information and communication activities.

On the other hand, the central bank said non-residents’ investments in debt instruments or lending by parent firms abroad to their local affiliates in the Philippines to fund existing operations and expansion more than double to $1.27 billion from $606 million.

Reinvestment of earnings inched up 6.7 percent to $193 million in the first quarter from $181 million in the same quarter last year.

For March alone, the net FDI inflow surged 30.6 percent to $509 million from $390 million in the same month last year.

Equity placements fell 70.7 percent to $49 million from $168 million while withdrawals dropped 48.6 percent to $42 million from $82 million.

Investments in debt instruments surged 75.1 percent to $445 million from $254 million while reinvestment or earnings went up 16.1 percent to $56 million from $49 million.

The BSP has raised its net FDI inflow target to $8 billion instead of $7 billion for this year after it reached an record high of $7.9 billion last year.

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