Europe-PH News

RP Invites SMEs From Germany

March 26, 2012

Bernie Cahiles Magkilat

Europe-PH News

Germany's small and medium enterprises which are now positioning themselves in Southeast Asia in time for the region's full integration by 2015, are being lured to explore opportunities in the Philippines.

Philippine Ambassador to Germany Maria Cleofe Natividad and four German Honorary consuls for the Philippines who led a German business delegation as part of the "2012 Team Philippines-Germany" said they are targetting Germany's small and medium enterprises to consider opportunities in the country.

"One of the target German businesses are the small and medium enterprises, which are family-owned ventures but are actually large by Philippine standards and actually account for 99.7 percent of the total number of business establishments in Germany," Natividad said.

Natividad noted that DFA Secretary Del Rosario gave them "marching orders to establish deeper economic linkages with Europe's top leader Germany, which must also position itself this early to prepare for the eventual formation of the ASEAN common market as its member countries start breaking down their remaining tariff walls and non-tariff barriers by 2015."

She said that German business leaders were impressed by the efforts of the Aquino administration to effect reforms in the country and make it more investment-friendly.  Such reforms include preventing a repeat of the past mistakes like the controversial Fraport issue that has affected for a while relations between both countries.  "We need to convince German business leaders that Germany must also diversify away from its European neighbors amid the Eurozone debt crisis, and consider Asia, particularly the Philippines as an alternative source of imports and haven for investments," she added.

"The group's experience here so far has been educational and an awakening for the Germans, some of whom are in the Philippines for the first time to experience hands-on the actual conditions and investment potentials of the country, as well as establish networks with business stakeholders from both government and the private sector," Natividad said.

The German visiting group was impressed with the attractive accomplishments of the Philippine Economic Zone Authority (PEZA) under Dr. Lilia B. De Lima who gave a presentation in gathering with SGV Chairmam Emeritus Washington Sycip.  The group also met with Philippine Vice President Jojo Binay, leaders ofthe European and German Chambers of Commerce of the Philippines led by Henry Schumacher, Tourism Secretary Ramon Jimenez, Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) officials.  The group also visited a successful German factory Continental Temic in Calamba, Laguna.

 

Source: Manila Bulletin Sunday; Business Bulletin; 25 March 2012

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