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PIA Press Release

PGMA speaks before world's big business leaders in Makati

Manila (10 October) -- President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo will offer the Philippines to international and local investors as one of the best values for investments when she faces a group of local and international business leaders during a business conference in Makati City on Friday under the auspices by Economist Conferences.

The President will be the guest of honor and speaker in the Business Roundtable with the Government of the Philippines to be hosted by the Economist Conferences (EC) at the Dusit Thani Manila Hotel in Makati City on Friday morning.

Economist Conferences is the world's leading organizer of business roundtables which held 32 such forum with world leaders in major business and emerging markets last year.

Among those who will welcome the President and her economic team include EC Asia-Pacific Editorial Director Charles Goddard; Asia-Pacific Program and Government Relations Director Vivien Peters; Nokia Siemens Network Asia-Pacific head Christian Frederikson; and Joey La Vista of the Philippine Business Leaders' Forum.

After addressing the forum, the President is expected to interact with a group of business panelists on key issues such as economic policies and investment prospects in the Philippines.

Although not insulated from the world economic slowdown and the financial meltdown in the US, the President, and even the Asian Development Bank (ADB), have projected the Philippines as in a better position to respond to such external pressures due to its strong macroeconomic policies which President Arroyo launched two years ago.

These policies include the implementation of tax reforms that resulted in bigger revenue collections that were subsequently invested to infrastructures, better education, health and other social services to strengthen the country's competitiveness.

For the past several years, the President has been offering the Philippines as one of the best investment destinations because of its strategic location, rich mineral resources, and the highly-efficient and English-speaking Filipino workforce.

At present, the Philippines continues to be the favorite call center and business process outsourcing (BPO) destination in the Asia-Pacific next only to India.

The next big thing for investors are the Philippines' mining and resurgent tourism industries that the President included as a major pillar in her five-year Medium-Term Philippine Development Plan.

With 7,107 islands, the Philippines is among the favorite tourist destinations in Asia because of its natural wonders: pristine white beaches, dive sites, surfing areas, old churches, historical sites, and diverse collection of exotic flora and fauna.

Global business conglomerates currently investing in the country's tourism industry include Marriot, Banyan Tree, Hyatt, Raffles of Singapore, and even Dubai World's hotel and its leisure arm, Kerzner.

On mining, the Philippines is among the 10 largest mining powers, with the world's richest in terms of mineral resources.

The Philippines is currently ranked third in gold, fourth in copper, fifth in nickel and sixth in Chromite deposits.

Also, the Philippines offers numerous opportunities for products such as garments, furniture, fashion accessories, and dried fruit products, among others. (PIA-MMIO) [top]

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