Investment inquiries flood CIPO office
Carlo S. Lorenciana (The Freeman) - January 4, 2018 - 12:00am

CEBU, Philippines — There has been a growing interest among foreign companies to invest in Cebu, an official said.

Roy Soledad, head of the Cebu Investment and Promotions Office (CIPO), said his office had received several inquiries from potential foreign investors last year.

"Several investors from other countries asked where they can possibly invest in Cebu," Soledad recently said in an interview.

He said those who inquired are investors from US, France, China, Korea, Japan, Switzerland, Malaysia, Brunei Darussalam, UAE and Indonesia.

Most of the potential companies are Chinese, Soledad said.

This developed as China-Philippines relations continue to improve under President Duterte.

The government official said these potential investors are interested into various industries such as equipment and electronics, energy, infrastructure, housing, hazardous waste and technology.

While those from Malaysia, Indonesia and Korea want to sell their products to the local market here.

Soledad expressed hope these potential investors would push through with their initial investment plans, granting that they would be able to find a good location in Cebu.

Overall, he said he is optimistic towards 2018 in terms of Cebu’s investment climate.

"We are expecting by 2018 kaning mga naplano ug nasugdan og process (in their plans) will contribute more this year," he said.

He said there should be significant improvements in Cebu's infrastructure quality to keep up with its continued economic growth.

He also expects a continued tourism boom in Cebu with the expected opening of Terminal 2 at the Mactan-Cebu International Airport, which is also seen to entice more investors.

However, he also cited the worsening traffic as a continuing challenge for Cebu this year, which really affects the province competitiveness-wise.

"Traffic is a concern here but not as much as in Manila," he said.

"We are aware and it's not easy to address that being an old province," he said.

He also called for the development of a mass transport system in Cebu to address this problem. (FREEMAN)

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