Passage of economic measures to boost FDI inflows: Pernia
MANILA -- Socioeconomic Planning Secretary Ernesto Pernia on Monday said inflows of foreign direct investments (FDI) can at least triple their current level with the passage of economic measures to liberalize the entry of foreign investments into the country.
During the Pre-State of the Nation Address (SONA) Economic and Infrastructure Forum held Monday at the Philippine International Convention Center, Pernia underscored the need to implement legislation to promote investments and create jobs.
He said these bills include the amendments to Foreign Investment Act, Retail Trade Act, and Public Service Act.
“With those three Acts passed and liberalizing the economy, we could really expect much more foreign direct investments tripling or quadrupling what we have already achieved,” he noted.
Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) data indicated that net FDI inflows reached USD9.8 billion in 2018 from USD10.3 billion in 2017.
Pernia, also the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) Director-General, pointed out the Philippines currently is the most restrictive country in the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (Asean) region.
“In Vietnam, practically all areas of FDIs is 100-percent foreign participation is allowed. Here in the Philippines, there are so many areas where FDI is only partially open to foreigners,” he said.
In a press briefing, Finance Secretary Carlos
Dominguez III said the Duterte administration is pursuing economic reforms to increase FDIs and jobs in the country.
Apart from these priority bills, Dominguez said it also aims to improve the implementation of existing reforms, such as the national ID system, ease of doing business, universal healthcare and the rice tariffication law.
Policy reforms in the pipeline include additional tax reform packages that will help boost government revenues and make the country more attractive to investments.