Biz Memos

British Chamber welcomes initiatives in boosting UK investments

British Chamber welcomes initiatives in boosting UK investments

On Jan. 30, 2024, the British Chamber of Commerce Philippines launched its monthly Trade & Connect (T&C) series to highlight the UK-PH trade relations with a webinar titled "Forecasting 2024: UK-PH Economic Perspectives" which featured officials from the government and the private sector to emphasize on its key priorities for 2024. 

Speakers and panelists include the British Ambassador to the Philippines Laure Beaufils, Director General of the Anti-Red Tape Authority Secretary Ernesto Perez, Undersecretary Allan Gepty from the International Trade Policy Group of the Department of Trade and Industry, Jonathan Ravelas, Senior Adviser at Reyes Tacandong & Co. and a welcoming video remarks by Hon. House Speaker Ferdinand Martin G. Romualdez, as moderated by the BCCP Executive Director/Trustee Chris Nelson. 

In Secretary Perez’s presentation, he highlighted the ARTA’s programs and initiatives in the ease of doing business (EODB) in the Philippines which include streamlining processes and registration for foreign investors through digitalization. 

To quote Secretary Perez:

“The Philippine economic potential is undeniable, as we embark on the journey to 2024, our collective goal is clear–never stop moving. This is not merely a call for perpetual motion, it is a call for action for continuous progress and a steadfast commitment to overcoming challenges… Let us make 2024 a year of remarkable progress, solidifying the UK-Philippines partnership and propelling the Philippines in its well-deserved upper middle income status.”

It was then echoed by the UK Ambassador Laure Beaufils as she presented updates on the UK-PH trade relations. Ambassador Beaufils lauded the government’s commitment and willingness to collaborate in strengthening the bilateral trade relations which is projected to continue to grow in the succeeding years. 

“Our trade has never been higher– it stands at  £2.9 billion. Right now, it’s equal and balanced, exports and imports between the two countries are pretty much at the same level which is something very exciting because that is not the case for all countries–it is growing and will continue to grow,” Ambassador Beaufils stated. 

In terms of British investments to the Philippines, Ambassador Beaufils noted the potential to boost investments which already started at the beginning of the year, noting big companies including Diageo, Don Papa Rum, and the joint venture between Inchcape and CATS Group of Companies. She further emphasized on the large potential of British investments coming in these sectors including: green infrastructure, renewable energy, defense, health and agriculture.

The British Chamber also remains committed to promoting various sectors in the country including agriculture as it pushes for the passage of the Anti-Agricultural Smuggling Act. It continues to assist UK companies particularly, SMEs in investing in the country. Its Trade & Connect monthly series will also delve into different sectors to provide an outlook for British companies in the Philippine market landscape. 

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