Philippines holds Investment Forum in Taipei highlighting CREATE Law and shining examples of Taiwanese manufacturing investments in the Philippines
Taipei, Taiwan (April 15, 2021) - The Manila Economic and Cultural Office (MECO) and its commercial affairs section—the Philippine Trade & Investment Center in Taipei, today held their annual Philippine Investment Forum in Taipei to highlight CREATE, the country’s new incentives law that will change and revolutionize the way investments and benefits for investors are granted to investors. The event was widely attended by a jam-packed crowd of top Taiwanese executives, decision-makers and business leaders that are looking for new destinations to expand their manufacturing and business operations.
The Corporate Recovery and Tax Incentives for Enterprises Act, otherwise known as CREATE, which was very recently signed into law by President Rodrigo Duterte on March 26, 2021 takes effect on July 1st of this year. Aside from lowering the current corporate income tax rate from 30% to 25% for large corporations and to 20% for small businesses, CREATE effectively overhauls and updates the tax and fiscal incentives and will be granted on a strategic, targeted, performance-based and time-bound basis. The new law is expected to make the Philippines a highly viable and more competitive choice for companies that are exploring for their next investment destination and manufacturing hub in Southeast Asia.
Department of Trade and Industry Undersecretary (Deputy Minister) Dr. Ceferino S. Rodolfo, PhD, who also concurrently serves as managing head of the Philippine Board of Investments, delivered the plenary keynote presentation via live online link to the audience in Taipei introducing the CREATE Law and how Taiwanese companies can take full advantage of the landmark legislation. “With the signing into law of the Corporate Recovery and Tax Incentives for Enterprises (CREATE) Act which will provide enhanced incentives that can position the Philippines competitively alongside other Asian countries vying for investments, we expect more manufacturing companies to follow suit, especially with the positive experiences and successes of established Taiwanese companies successfully operating in the Philippines,” said Undersecretary Rodolfo. He also noted that the President certified as urgent, three major bills currently pending before congress, that are seen to further improve the business climate and make the Philippines a more attractive business destination. These are namely to introduce amendments to the Public Service Act, the Foreign Investments Act and the Retail Trade Liberalization Act. Undersecretary Rodolfo also informed the audience that the President just recently issued an Executive Order lifting the ban on new mining agreements.
MECO Chairman and Resident Representative in his Welcome Remarks and Opening Keynote commended Taiwan’s economic performance, “Noteworthy and commendable, however, is Taiwan, with its laudable handling of the ongoing health crisis, thus managing to overcome the challenges and even growing their economy by 3.11 percent. With experts projecting Taiwan’s economic growth at 4.64 percent this year, I believe greater cooperation and partnership with Taiwan’s businesses would be a good platform to launch a comeback as the pandemic hopefully subsides.” Banayo ended his remarks with an invitation: “We look forward to sharing golden opportunities with the Taiwanese business community, particularly in the fields of manufacturing, infrastructure investments and information communications technology. Choose Philippines! Make it happen in the Philippines!”
In an impressive show of support for the Philippines, top-ranking Taiwanese executives with extensive business and manufacturing operations in the Philippines came out in full force to provide their testimonial keynotes on their positive experiences and how choosing the Philippines contributed to their respective corporate bottomlines and leading positions in their markets.
James Wang, CEO of SERCOMM, a global leader in the manufacture of telecommunications and broadband equipment, shared how they were able to scale their operations from just a little over a year ago. SERCOMM currently employs more than 2,000 Filipinos in the country and has a leading market share for their product segments in the US market. "We are very proud to have achieved the production milestone in such a short time, especially during this unprecedented time. Sercomm Philippines has become a crucial portion of Sercomm's global operations. We plan to continuously expand our operations to support future business growth in the local and global markets” said Wang.
Chairman Patrick Chiu of Hocheng Philippines Corporation which has been operating a major manufacturing hub in the Philippines for over 25 years since 1995, shared that the company has steadily grown its business in the Philippines enjoying a 55% current market share. HCG now enjoys the distinction as the No. 1 total bathroom solutions provider in the Philippines. Mr. Patrick Chiu, Chairman of Hocheng Philippines in his testimonial keynote, shared his company’s experiences and successes in the Philippine market and how they are quickly able to address challenges brought about by the pandemic.
The forum’s other resource keynote speakers provided highly valuable insights for the Taiwanese business leaders and entrepreneurs considering the Philippines for their future plans. Ma. Corazon Halili-Dichosa, Executive Director of the Philippine Board of Investments, who heads the Industry Development Services Group, discussed why the Philippines is Taiwan’s next R&D and Manufacturing Partner in Asia at this investment forum. She also discussed the numerous advantages of establishing operations int he Philippines such as unrivaled access to market regional markets, FTAs, GSP Privileges and the country’s world-class, globally sought after human resource.
Kevan Tsai, Director of TEEMA’s New Southbound Project Team and serves in the newly formed and very important New Southbound-Taiwan ICT Links Committee, discussed why TEEMA has included the Philippines among the top countries for Taiwanese electronics and semiconductors companies to consider in their regional expansion plans.
Jonathan Ravelas, the Chief Market Strategist and First Vice President of BDO, the Philippines largest universal bank provided an in-depth economic overview and market outlook on the Philippines. Aside from the government’s infrastructure program, he considers as factors that will further boost economic recovery the additional spending on health and education and the election spending ahead of the 2022 polls, in additional to recent legislation meant to address recovery from the pandemic.
The Philippine Investment Forum in Taipei 2021 is organized by the Philippine Trade and Investment Center in Taipei (PTIC Taipei), which also represents the Philippine Department of Trade and Industry in Taiwan and is headed by DTI Trade Representative and MECO Director of Commercial Affairs, Michael Alfred Ignacio who opened the forum and moderated the Q&A Sessions. PTIC Taipei regularly assists Taiwanese investors, Philippine exporters and represents the country’s business and commercial interests with Taiwan. This event is PTIC Taipei’s flagship forum to engage potential Taiwanese investors and locators for the Philippines.
ABOUT PTIC TAIPEI
The Philippine Trade & Investment Center in Taipei is the Commercial Affairs Section of the Manila Economic and Cultural Office and the representative office of the Philippine Department of Trade & Industry in Taiwan