Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) Secretary Ramon Lopez together with other Philippine (PH) infrastructure development team – Department of Transportation (DOTr) Secretary Arthur Tugade, Public Works and Highways (DPWH) Secretary Mark Villar, and Bases and Conversion Development Authority (BCDA) President and CEO Vivencio Dizon — have engaged in discussions with high-level representatives of British companies on several PH infrastructure investment opportunities as well as PH government’s Build, Build, Build program.

During the “Investing in Philippine Infrastructure” forum organized by DTI and the Philippine Trade and Investment Center (PTIC) in London, United Kingdom on 26 September 2018, infrastructure complementarities focusing on engineering and design, as well as technical solutions were identified.

“President Rodrigo Duterte’s administration focuses on providing a comfortable life for all Filipinos, which is the main mission of our massive infrastructure program. Efficient infrastructure facilitates trade, opens new markets, develops growth centers, and enhances micro, small, and medium enterprises in the countryside. With the Philippines’ rich pool of talent, plus your expertise in infrastructure development, our collaboration would be a win-win,” Sec. Lopez told 23 British company executives who attended the roundtable discussion.

The PH trade chief highlighted the country’s growing number of engineering professionals and skilled graduates that can be employed by companies.

The PH infrastructure development team assured British companies that PH is an open market and is ready to do business with any country following President Duterte’s independent foreign policy.

Meanwhile, Arup — a British firm expert in airport planning, tunnel design, maritime, railway, and bridge engineering — expressed its interest to provide technical solutions in various projects of the PH government.

Sec. Villar emphasized that the country’s priority projects are those that have been subjected to rigorous tests and standards – where resilience and sustainability were among the factors considered — by international organizations.

Wood PLC’s Senior Vice President Alex Haynes opened the possibility of developing renewable energy technologies for airports. Sec. Tugade said that he is very interested in this as “airports are the number one producer of carbon footprints.” The Transport Secretary pushed for more renewable energy source such as solar farms that will support the airports. Further talks are slated to continue at Clark Global City in Pampanga.

Sec. Lopez also conveyed DTI’s efforts to bring in more investments in the energy industry and open up this sector as well as other sectors to foreign investment with higher foreign equity participation.

Wood PLC is a provider of engineering and technical services to clients in the energy and industrial markets worldwide. The company operates in more than 60 countries, including in the PH. They have offices in Batangas City, Bonifacio Global City in Taguig City, and Muntinlupa City, as they have worked with Shell on the Malampaya deep well project.

Other British companies represented by their top executives during the forum include Atkins, Asia House, BAE Systems, Finsburry, Jardine Matheson & Co, Accenture, HSBC, Standard Chartered, KPMG, NATS, Prudential, UOB, and ZICO Law.♦


Date of Release: 5 October 2018