Foreign investment pledges approved by the country’s seven investment promotion agencies (IPAs) more than tripled to P46 billion in the first quarter of the year, with most of the proposed investments originating from Netherlands, Japan and Thailand, the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) reported yesterday.
Total foreign investments approved by IPAs during the period jumped by more than three-fold from P14.2 billion in the same quarter in 2018.
These cover those cleared by the following IPAs: Board of Investments (BOI), Clark Development Corp. (CDC), Philippine Economic Zone Authority (PEZA), Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority (SBMA), Authority of the Freeport Area of Bataan (AFAB), BOI-Autonomous Region of Muslim Mindanao (BOI-ARMM) and Cagayan Economic Zone Authority (CEZA).
Among the top investing countries during the quarter, Netherlands pledged the most at P10.1 billion, accounting for 22 percent of total commitments. Japan committed P9.4 billion constituting 20.5 percent of total, while Thailand pledged P8.5 billion, or 18.4 percent of total approved foreign investments.
By industry, manufacturing stands to receive 76.1 percent of the total investment pledges equivalent to P35 billion. Administrative and support service activities came in second with investment commitments valued at P3.5 billion or 7.7 percent of total. Accommodation and food service activities followed with P2.9 billion or a 6.4 percent share.
By location, majority of the approved foreign investments in the first quarter of 2019 would be intended to finance projects in Region 3 – Central Luzon amounting to P22.1 billion or 48.1 percent of total. This was followed by Region 4A – Calabarzon with P15.7 billion (34.1 percent), and National Capital Region with P6.3 billion or 13.7 percent.
Meanwhile, combined investment commitments of foreign and Filipino nationals in the first quarter of 2019 grew by 48.1 percent to P274.2 billion from P185.1 billion in the same period a year ago.
Filipinos pledged P228.2 billion worth of investments or 83.2 percent of total approved investments during the quarter.
Foreign and local projects approved by the seven IPAs in the first quarter of 2019 are expected to generate 41,837 jobs, 24 percent higher compared with the previous year’s projected employment.
Out of these anticipated jobs, 76.4 percent or 31,979 jobs would come from projects with foreign interest.