Japan’s Chamber of Commerce Assures More than 500 Firms to PH Under Duterte’s Presidency

Japan on Thursday has announced it would closely cooperate with the new president elect Rodrigo Duterte.

During the Tokyo Business Summit on Thursday, the Kansai Economic Federation (Kankeiren) and Japan’s Chamber of Commerce and Industry, assured the Philippine delegates that Japan’s plan to transfer the 300 manufacturing plants which put on hold since June, 20015 will finally be realized.

“There will be more than 500 Japanese firms to be transferred to the Philippines during the course of the new president’s term. This plan had long been decided, but the declining interest of our investors on  the outgoing president became a big factor why the transfer did not proceed. With the new president who promised to change the Philippines, we believe we can finally continue with our investment”, Japanese business magnate Hideki Shibata said.

“Our survey mission in the Philippines (has) a definite objective in the light of movements toward the ASEAN economic integration as well as negotiations both for EPA (Economic Partnership Agreement) and FTA (Free Trade Agreement),” Kansai Economic Federation (Kankeiren) Vice Chairman Masayuki Matsushita

Matsushita added that the mission aims to find out the economic conditions, industrial policies and investment environment, and use their findings to expand business exchanges between Kansai, Japan and the Philippines.

Duterte has yet to announce his cabinet members, especially in the Department of Trade and Industry, and the Department of Labor and Employment.

Duterte’s supporters on Wednesday urged the outgoing mayor and incoming president, to appoint Sen. And vice presidential candidate Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos, as the new DOLE secretary regardless of the outcome of the controversial elections.

Matsuhita added that the plan could boost local employment as it could provide almost a million jobs, especially in CALABARZON, Central Luzon, Cebu, Davao, and NIR regions.

“If the new government will allow us to put our factories in different provinces that have sea and air access, we will do so local workers not need to travel. Homesickness is one of the factors why efficiency and productivity of workers decline based on our study”, Matsushita said. /Carlo Billones/

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