Open for Business

The president giving a speech about coco water upon his return from the US.

President Aquino has been “on the go” lately, seeking better ties and investor expansion for the Philippines. Just last week, the president had a 5 day visit to the US, upon invitation of US President Obama and Brazil President Rouseff to give a keynote at the launch of the Open Government Partnership (OGP). On the side, the president talked to business leaders about expanding their presence in the country.

A month earlier, the president visited China, in the same hopes of promoting the Philippines as investment worthy to Chinese companies, and to strengthen cooperation between the two nations, amidst tension of claims in the Spratly Islands.

In both trips, there seem to be one common proposition: the Philippines is open for business.

“Good governance is good economics.” This sums up the president’s message to official and employees of the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund last week. With the Philippines being one of eight nations in OGP’s Steering Committee, transparency becomes one of the key factors to attract more business ventures in the country. It means a level playing field for anyone interested in investing in the Philippines, no more “connections” and “circumventions”.  And on a lighter note, our own buko juice may see more penetration in the US market.

In China, the president was successful in relaying the message that opportunities are present in the Philippines. He highlighted agriculture, infrastructure, energy and tourism as possible investment opportunities. The outcome: at least PHP13B worth of investments in the pipeline.

These developments are a good sign for our economy, more investors means more jobs, more inflows for the government, and probably more spending power for the Filipino. Amidst the crisis in Europe and elsewhere around the world, at least there are positive signs for the Philippine economy. And with the president’s rating up this quarter, many Filipinos believe that these state visits will bring results to our country.

Japan is the president’s next stop for this week. Banking on the same message of good governance and investment opportunities, things are definitely looking up. How about you guys? What are your thoughts about P-Noy’s state visits, and how do you see it affecting the economic climate? Hit us up in the comments section below.

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