Osaka City-based firms eye biz expansion in PHL–Peza chief


The Philippine Economic Zone Authority (Peza) is looking forward to realizing more investments from Japan after it welcomed delegates from an Osaka City-led business mission, which it said brought 15 Japanese firms with plans to put up businesses in different sectors, including food, agriculture and manufacturing, among others.

“We are encouraging more investments coming from Japan, especially this time when we, alongside President Bongbong R. Marcos Jr., are most aggressive in promoting the Philippines to the international business community,” Peza Officer-in-Charge Director General Tereso O. Panga revealed.

Panga issued the statement following the 3-day Osaka-led Business Partner City (BPC) mission, which kicked off last Thursday, for joint official and business delegation with the delegates.

According to the investment promotion agency, the delegation brought 30 investors, including representatives from 15 Japanese companies which it said are planning to put up businesses in different sectors, including manufacturing, food, agriculture, pharmaceutical, electronics, and machinery.

For his part, Presidential Special Envoy to Japan Regis Romero II highlighted the efforts being done by the government to continue pitching in the country to Japanese investors. Among the efforts, he noted is the “easy way of doing business” in the Philippines.

“Our President is quite bullish in providing you the business climate and the easy way of doing business in the Philippines. Peza is part of the government industrial estate where your incentives—business incentives, tax incentives, and benefits —are also consolidated into one to ease up permits and doing business in the Philippines,” Romero stressed.

Meanwhile, Panga said Peza is also looking at intensifying collaborations with Osaka, especially in engaging its more than 30,000 small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), which the agency said will “encourage” local SMEs to be integrated in the ecozone program.

“What we want is not just our ecozones to grow but including our SMEs that support the operations of our locator companies. Without which, we cannot provide a better ecosystem for our investors here in the Philippines,” Panga explained.

According to Peza, the Osaka Business Partner City Council (OBPC), the lead of the delegation, alongside the Philippine Trade and Investment Center (PTIC) Osaka, is positive that more partnerships will come out of the 3-day inbound mission.

“I’m convinced that the roundtable and other events held together with the [forum] today will be of great significance in promoting economic exchange between Osaka and its Partner Cities in the future,” OBPC Executive Director and Secretary General Makoto Yagi said.

To date, the investment promotion agency reported there are about 887 Japanese companies registered in Peza, which generated P745.637 billion in investments, $17.250 billion exports, and 350,710 direct jobs.

Some of the top companies in Peza include, among others, Taganito HPAL Nickel Corporation, Toshiba Information Equipment (Philippines) Inc., Ibiden Philippines Inc., Canon Business Machines (Philippines) Inc., and Tsuneishi Heavy Industries (Cebu) Inc.

With the recent state visit of the President in Tokyo, the Peza interim chief said, “We are expecting more Japanese business partners and companies to come and invest in the Philippines as part of their long-term business plan.”

In fact, Panga noted, the agency has already received “more inquiries” from interested Japanese firms “who will greatly add to the exports of the Philippines.”