Cologne, Germany—In the efforts of DTI’s aggressive move towards trade promotions of exportable food and fruit products with the aim to further boost Philippine export industry, the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) delegation led by Trade Promotions Undersecretary Abdulgani M. Macatoman is currently together with 36 Philippine food producers and manufacturers in the much-awaited leading trade fair for food and beverage industry, Anuga 2019 running 5-9 of October in Koelmesse, Cologne Germany.

This gathering signal a strong ‘One DTI’–an agency united by a common cause to uphold the quality of our local businesses and the export competitiveness of the Philippines in the global trade,” Usec Macatoman said during the Ceremonial Opening.

The Philippines highlighted the country’s premium commodities – banana, coconut, mango, and tuna along with other top-notch products in the said trade fair.

Speaking of trade, the Philippines and European countries have always maintained a solid partnership in matters of trade and investments. In terms of region, the European Union or EU is currently the Philippines’ 4th largest trading partner, 3rd largest import source and 4th largest export market in 2018 with Germany as our top 7 export country destination.

The Philippines also continues to enjoy zero tariff benefits from the EU under the Generalized Scheme of Preferences or GSP+. The GSP+ coverage was implemented in 2014 and currently gives duty-free privileges in 6, 274 product tariff lines from the Philippines.

The EU Commission’s 2018 mid-term GSP evaluation showed that the Philippines has the second most diversified export portfolio under EU-GSP+ with 3,047 tariff lines covered under EU-GSP+ from 2014-2016. The same report also indicated that the Philippines has an average EU-GSP+ utilization rate of 68.9 percent from 2014 to 2016.

With the overwhelming response from our previous participation, we have brought this year our biggest delegation yet in Anuga with 36 companies under the FoodPhilippines banner as part of the Philippine government’s initiative to strengthen the Philippine and European relations in matters of trade and investment, It is through events like Anuga, which offers a platform for business opportunities and partnerships through the exchange of culture and flavors, that this trade relation continues to grow even further,” Macatoman said.

We are thankful to our European partners for this privilege since around 25 percent of total Philippine exports to the EU benefit from the EU GSP+ trade preference. As of 2017, An estimate of more than 2-billion-euro worth of Philippine exports has benefited from GSP+ trade preference,” Macatoman emphasized.

This year, the Philippine delegation was graced by Madam Cielito “Honeylet” Avancena, who has been a long-time business woman and an advocate of the micro-, small- and medium-enterprises (MSMEs).

The Philippine participation in Anuga 2019 is spearheaded by DTI-CITEM and Philippine Trade and Investment Centers (PTIC) Berlin, Germany.♦ 

Date of Release: 7 October 2019