At least nine electronics firms, two of which are considered “giants” in their field, are exploring the possibility of setting up shop in the country as the Philippines is emerging as a favored investment site in the region.
Dan C. Lachica, president of the Semiconductor and Electronics Industries in the Philippines Inc. (Seipi), said these companies, mostly based in Japan and the United States, were in different stages of negotiations with the concerned Philippine government agencies, after expressing their willingness to locate here.
“This is the time that investors are looking at the Philippines as an investment site… government should make the business climate more conducive,” Lachica said in a briefing.
It also helped that the country has secured investment grade ratings from three notable credit raters, namely, the Japan Credit Rating Agency Ltd., Fitch Ratings and Standard & Poor’s Ratings Services (S&P).
The Philippines’ Gross Domestic Product also grew by a record 7.8 percent in the first quarter, making it the fastest-growing economy in Asia.
This year, Lachica said that Seipi was retaining its forecast of a 5-6 percent growth in electronics exports, from the $23 billion posted by the electronics industry in 2012, despite the slump in electronics exports in the first quarter of 2013.
Seipi chair Bing Viera said that the projected growth may come from the expected increase in demand for tablets and smart phones, consumer appliances and automotive parts—the components for which are manufactured in the country.
Lachica added that the electronics and semiconductor industry remained optimistic about reaching its export target of $50 billion by 2016.
To help achieve the target, the Seipi, through the 10th Philippine Semiconductor and Electronics Convention and Exhibition 2013, has urged industry players to “move to the next level.”
(Source: Philippine Daily Inquirer)