DTI-EMB conducts seminar on new markets for PHL exports
Business Mirror
January 4, 2017

IN celebration of the 2016 National Exporters Week (NEW), the Export Marketing Bureau (EMB) of the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) conducted a seminar focusing on “New Markets for Philippine Exports” last December 9, 2016, at the DTI International Building in Makati City as part of its Usapang Exports seminar series.

The seminar—which focused on export opportunities and discussions on doing business with the Russian Federation, Israel, Mexico, South Africa, India and the Islamic Republic of Iran—was attended by exporters and participants from the private sector, academe and government.

The morning session included presentations from Itamar Alexander Gero, president of the Israel Chamber of Commerce of the Philippines; Ambassadors Igor Anatolyevich Khovaev of the Embassy of the Russian Federation, and Julio Camarena Villaseñor of the Embassy of Mexico; while the afternoon session consisted of presentations from Tshire Kau, political counselor of the Embassy of South Africa; Narayanan Ramakrishnan, chargé d’affaires of the Embassy of India; and Ambassador Mohammad Tanhaei of the Embassy of the Islamic Republic of Iran.

Also present during the activity were Andrey Sapozhnikov, commercial counselor of the Embassy of the Russian Federation; and Hadass Nisan, deputy chief of mission of the Embassy of Israel in the Philippines.

Israel is the 41st trading partner of the Philippines, with total trade valued at $150,219,992 in 2015.

Dubbed as a start-up nation by Time Magazine, Israel is in the top5 emerging tech hubs in the world, second only to the United States. It also ranks first in the world in expenditure on research and development (R&D), with companies such as Intel, Microsoft and Apple opening their first R&D centers outside the US in Israel.

New business opportunities for Israel are available in the sectors of electronic equipment and manufacturing (particularly in integrated circuits); processed and frozen food (fish); pineapple, coconut and other fresh and dried fruits; business-process outsourcing (software development, quality assurance); and tourism.

The Philippines has agreed to foster a stronger trade relationship with Russia. During the bilateral discussions between President Duterte and Russian President Vladimir Putin at the margins of the Apec meeting in Peru, Russia committed to buy up to $2.5 billion worth of Philippine fruits, grains or vegetables in the next 12 months. Philippine exporters can benefit from Russia’s Generalized System of Preferences covering about 2,800 goods, which include meat, fish, fruits and vegetables, coffee, cocoa, rice, coconut oil and processed foods.

Mexico is the 11th-largest economy in the world with a GDP purchasing power parity (PPP) of $2.23 trillion. Its economy has become increasingly oriented toward manufacturing in the 22 years since the North American Free Trade Agreement entered into force. Mexico is the 28th trading partner of the Philippines, with total trade valued at $507,837,808 in 2015. Top Philippine exports to Mexico include digital processing units, integrated electronic circuits and photovoltaic solar cells, among others. Trade and investment opportunities in Mexico are available for manufacturing and assembly of components of electric and electronic products and auto parts; construction of resorts; construction and management of ports; and pharmaceutical products.

South Africa, positioned as a manufacturing center of excellence, serves as the gateway to the African market and its more than 260 million consumers.

Opportunities for investments and trade in South Africa are available in priority sectors, such as advanced manufacturing, nanotechnology, agribusiness, automotive and components, capital equipment, aerospace, tourism, ICT and electronics, business processing and outsourcing, forestry products and furniture, among others.

India is the third-largest economy in PPP terms behind the US and China, with a GDP of $2.1 trillion in 2015. It is 16th major trading partner is the Philippines, with total trade valued at $1,446,092,016 in 2015. The services sector is the main driver of the Indian economy.

With liberalization and reforms in the last two decades, India is seen as a prominent emerging economy. Potential sectors of interest for India include pharmaceuticals, bio and thermal-energy motorcycles and autoparts, mining and infrastructure, space and defense-related industry, environmental energy, steel, textiles, construction, coal, dairy and other agro-based industry, and information and technology.

Iran is the second-largest economy in the Middle East and North African region after Saudi Arabia and the secondlargest population of the region after Egypt. Iran has been at the heart of the Silk Road, facilitating trade and acting as a hub for exchange of ideas and knowledge between the East and the West since the second century. It is a natural hub for the production of goods and services to serve a vast consumer market.

With the extensive economic and financial sanctions relief received by Iran following confirmation from the International Atomic Energy Agency that it had met its obligations under the nuclear deal agreed on July 14, 2015, the country is now able to trade more freely globally.

Iran is looking to regain market share by increasing global trade. Opportunities for trade and investment in Iran are available in the health-care and pharmaceutical industry, science and technology, and retail.