Phl, Saudi Arabia business group to promote trade invesment (Philippine Star)

MANILA, Philippines – The Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry (PCCI) and the Ministry of Commerce and Industry of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia have agreed to work together to promote greater trade and investment ties between the two countries.
According to PCCI president Alfredo Yao, the PCCI recently met with Khalid S. Halawani Alsaid, commercial attache of Saudi Arabia based in Kuala Lumpur, and Ayman A. Bedaiwi, first secretary of the Embassy of Saudi Arabia in the Philippines.
Yao said the parties plan to have an exchange of trade delegations this year involving companies focused on infrastructure, manufacturing, information technology, fresh fruits and vegetables, processed food, handicrafts and tourism.
This, as the parties want to create awareness on specific projects, commodities and services offered by both countries.
Yao said there are opportunities for companies from Saudi Arabia to invest in manufacturing projects in the Philippines to cater to the domestic market as well as other Southeast Asian countries as products made in the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) would soon enter other member-countries at zero duty.
As in Saudi Arabia, there are also economic zones in the Philippines that offer incentives for foreign locators, Yao said.
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enedicto Yujuico, board director of the PCCI international committee and past president of the Confederation of Asia-Pacific Chambers of Commerce and Industry, said there are also opportunities for production of halal products in the Philippines for Saudi Arabia.
Alsaid said businessmen from Saudi Arabia are not aware of trade opportunities available in the Philippines thus the need to intensify trade promotion activities.
Trade delegations from Saudi Arabia that have previously visited the country were mostly composed of recruitment companies.
Alsaid said the PCCI could conduct market events and trade exhibitions for Philippine products in Saudi Arabia.
Export winners like handicrafts and furniture that are differentiated by creativity have huge potential in the Saudi Arabia markets, he said.
PCCI chairman Miguel Varela said the core group of the Philippine-Saudi Arabia Business Council would be convened to discuss Saudi Arabia’s proposals.
The PCCI, the country’s largest business organization, is actively promoting the Philippines as a hub in the Asean to support the growth of local businesses as well as the government goal’s of making the country an attractive destination for investments to create jobs and achieve inclusive economic growth.