BOI, PEZA  INVESTMENTS  ROSE  BY  A DRAMATIC P137 BILLION
 

MANILA
, July 14 , 2004
 (STAR)
By Marianne V. Go  -  Combined capital inflows approved by the Board of Investments (BOI) and the Philippine Export Zone Authority (PEZA) rose by a dramatic 692 percent to P137.22 billion in the first five months of the year from only P17.33 billion in the same period a year ago.

Trade and Industry Secretary Cesar V. Purisima said that energy-related projects dominated the investment scene during the five-month period.

"Investors see the business viability in engaging in the power industry as the country’s industries and population continue to grow," Purisima said.

"The large investment base during the five-month period is mainly due to infrastructure investment projects which is 2,337 percent higher compared to the same period last year," he added. Purisima also said that "infrastructure projects approved this year are composed of five capital intensive power projects with a total cost of P109.96 billion and a mining venture worth P1.34 billion."

According to Purisima, the Arroyo government will continue to promote investments in infrastructure because these projects pour in the large capital while at the same time improve the country’s industrial efficiency and production.

Furthermore, Purisima commented "the important consideration is that without the necessary infrastructure, it will be more difficult to attract investments in other sectors."

Investments in manufacturing and services grew 110 percent to P25.92 billion compared to the P12.35 billion invested for the comparable first five months of 2003.

Purisima explained that while "investments in this sector constitute only 19 percent of the total approved projects, it will open up 31,555 new jobs or 98 percent of the total employment to be generated."

Expansion of existing information technology (IT) projects and the entry of new players brought the total IT investments to P4.04 billion or 77 percent higher than the P2.28 billion made last year.

Foreign investments grew by 1,005 percent or P120.11 billion from P10.87 billion last year.

Top investors for the first five months of the year was Nauru with a P96.53 billion infusion mainly due to its GNPower Ltd. Co. project.

Japanese investments, most of which were in manufacturing, also increased to P15.60 million from P3.44 billion last year.

Other top investors were Britain and the US, with pledged investments of P3.36 billion and P1.51 billion, respectively.

The top investment destination for the five-month period was Region 3.


Reported by: Sol Jose Vanzi

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