Korea, Japan firms bullish on PH


    Korean and Japanese companies are bullish on the Philippines, pledging increased investments in various industries into the country.

    South Korea ambassador Dong Man Han said in a recent interview will invest as much as $1 billion on infrastructure, automotive and tourism facilities in the Philippines.

    Undersecretary Rafaelita Aldaba of the Department of Trade and Industry meanwhile said the Nikkei BP Publications’ PH-Japan Business Investment Forum last October 28 in Tokyo has generated $215 million-worth of investment projects by Japanese firms to the Philippines.

    Leading the Korean pledges is Hyundai Motor Co.’s plan to build electric vehicles (EVs) in the Philippines, including e-jeepneys, in its Laguna plant.

    Han said Korean companies are being encouraged to invest in electronic commerce.

    There are 4,000 Korean companies in the Philippines led by the Korea Power Co. now building a power plant in Quezon province.

    Electronics giants Samsung and LG and ship maker Hanjin have local operations.

    Official development assistance (ODA), worth $1 billion, includes the new $172.64-million Cebu International Container Port; the new $100-million Dumaguete airport; $50 million for the National Irrigation Administration; and $41 million for the implementation of electronic receipts, invoices and sales reporting system to monitor taxes paid by retailers.

    Korean investors are also building a $20-million industrial and tourism complex in Pangasinan with a fish farm, solar and wind power generation facilities, seaplane berths and a monorail.

    Meanwhile, Aldaba said the investment intentions from Japan cover infrastructure development, railways, EV public transport systems, retail, manufacturing, logistics, warehousing, factory automation, construction, and real estate industries.

    The investment projects include the opening of the Philippines first MOS Burger, Japan’s second largest burger chain, in March 2020; Assemblepoint Co., Ltd’s interest to develop smart 4WEV (4-wheel EV) using the latest IOT technologies; Japanese anime studio Satelight’s intention to outsource animation work in PH; as well as Kanepackage’s new factory facility.

    Sumitomo Wiring also presented their two expansion projects in wire harness and components manufacturing. Marubeni Corp. likewise shared their joint venture project with Metro Pacific and LSI to build 30 primary care clinics, 10 cancer centers, and install five centralized laboratory testing hubs in strategic cities.