UKTI to bring Philippine government and 80 British companies together (Business Mirror (Philippines))

THE Philippines will get a chance to improve foreign direct investments (FDI) in the country as it goes on a road show of United Kingdom companies with regional headquarters in the Asia-Pacific region.

Through an initiative of the British Embassy’s UK Trade and Investment (UKTI), the Philippine government, led by Finance Secretary Cesar V. Purisima and Philippine Economic Zone Authority Director General Lilia de Lima will meet with 80 British companies in Hong Kong next month.

UKTI Director Iain Mansfield said the road show is the second they are holding after a similar event was held in Singapore last year.

We want to provide opportunities. Most British companies have headquarters in Hong Kong. As we have seen in the past, it is the regional director who makes investment decisions, Mansfield said.

According to Mansfield, they are looking at engineering infrastructure, financial, and legal services at possible new investments in the country coming from the road show.

He also said that aside from investments, the British companies will most likely be bidding for contracts while also looking for partnerships.

We are targeting at least 20 companies to visit the Philippines. It helps that the Philippines has a strong macroeconomic foundation, Mansfield said of the potential result of the Hong Kong road show. He said that they had 15 visits from the road show last year.

The UK is the highest European investor in the Philippines with a net FDI stock of over $5 billion.

For the first half of the year, FDI to the Philippines dropped significantly by 40 percent to $2.02 billion due to uncertainties in the global economy.

Mansfield said they are assisting UK companies who are looking to invest in the Philippines in a variety of ways, including providing tailored introductions and meetings, access to senior government officials, cradle to grave support when bidding for major government contracts, trade missions, sector specific workshops and promotional events.