Greetings to the officers and members of the Nordic Chamber of Commerce of the Philippines. On behalf of the Department of Trade and Industry, I extend my warmest congratulations to the Nordic Chamber on its 10th Anniversary Celebration.

We are grateful to the Nordic Chamber for its outstanding support to DTI in bringing together the Nordic and Filipino business communities. The Nordic countries and the Philippines have a longstanding diplomatic relationship. And the Nordic Chamber has been DTI’s important partner for years.

I look forward to our continued partnership to increase trade and investment between our countries and enable Filipino and Nordic businesses to expand and flourish.

As you know, the Philippine economy is on a path toward solid recovery following the COVID-19 pandemic. And the investment climate in our country has significantly improved due to our recent game-changing reforms. Noteworthy are the passage of the Retail Trade Liberalization Act and the amendment of our Public Service Act and Foreign Investments Act to ease the restrictions on foreign ownership of certain businesses. Thus, we anticipate more investment inflows going forward. In addition, the Corporate Recovery and Tax Incentives for Enterprises (CREATE) Act offers more attractive and rationalized incentives to foreign investors, including those from the Nordic countries. We have also eased the entry restrictions on foreign nationals who do or own businesses in the Philippines.

Recently, we clarified that foreigners can now own 100% of renewable energy projects in our country. This will support our efforts to raise the share of renewables in our national power generation from 30% to 50% by 2040.

To improve the ease of doing business in the Philippines, DTI is enabling a cross-cutting mechanism. We are working on a presidential executive order to mandate government agencies to establish a Green Lane in their respective offices. This Green Lane will streamline the processing of permits and licenses, and offer a single point of entry for strategic investments and highly desirable projects of national significance. We encourage members of Nordic Chamber to consider the opportunities this mechanism will offer.

We further hope to engage the Nordic Chamber as we deepen the participation of Philippine-based industries in global value chains that the pandemic, disruptive technologies, and geopolitical developments have reconfigured. We are keen on investments and partnerships in such sectors as semiconductors and electronics, electric vehicles, precision manufacturing, media, telecommunications, business process outsourcing, and processed or preserved food products, to cite a few examples. We are also keen to have investments in infrastructure on a public-private partnership arrangement.

We at DTI look forward to our continued partnership with the Nordic Chamber as we endeavor to achieve an inclusive and sustainable economy. Together, let us make investments happen in the Philippines.

Congratulations to the Nordic Chamber on your 10th anniversary! *

Date of release: 30 January 2023