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New Japanese investments expected to boost packaging, plastics sectors|
September 2, 2012 5:24pm
Plastics manufacturers are expecting that new Japanese investments, especially those in the printing business, will boost the country's packaging sector and and their own industry.
At the technical consultation on the Japan-Philippines Economic Partnership Agreement (JPEPA), Philippine Plastics Industry Association member Vicente Co said that the new investors will require raw materials for their packaging.
“The prospects for business for the plastics manufacturers and packaging materials suppliers are looking up,” Co said.
Plastics manufacturers also cited other product tariff lines that the industry could explore under JPEPA, as they are not limited to supplying packaging products. For instance, Co’s company, Manly Plastics, also supplies bumper parts to auto companies like Toyota. Co said that they can diversify their product mix given preferential tariffs.
Other concerns raised by the chemicals, plastics, steel and auto industries included safeguards needed for domestic industries, compliance of parties, investment opportunities, and assessment of the impact of the agreement.
The technical consultation, organized by the Department of Trade and Industry, is part of its "One Country, One Voice" program to enable stakeholders to participate in trade policy formulation and trade negotiations.
“Trade policy formulation must be more consultative and effective to make sure policy makers and negotiators do not merely rely on econometric models to arrive at policy or negotiating positions,” DTI undersecretary Adrian Cristobal said in a statement.
Also presented during the technical consultation were preliminary studies on the impact of the bilateral trade pact, showing increased investments after it took effect in December 2008.
Japanese-approved investments in the Philippines reached P70.737 billion in 2009 and P58 billion in 2010, much more than the P38 billion investments approved in 2007 before the agreement took effect.
Japan’s Nomura Research Institute also reported big-ticket investments entering or expanding in the Philippines in 2011, amounting to $1.049 billion. Some of these involved printer companies like Canon, Brother, and Epson.
Japan became the country’s leading investor in 2011, accounting for 30.2 percent of total foreign investments registered at the Board of Investments and Philippine Economic Zone Authority, two of the leading investment promotion agencies of the government.