Economic Status of The Philippines 2010
European businessmen see the Philippines to possibly make an economic rebound in 2010 with growth to be potentially driven by electronics, agri-business, tourism, business process outsourcing (BPO), property development, and retail.
European Chamber of Commerce of the Philippines (ECCP) executive vice president Henry Schumacher said investors may have good reasons to be cautiously optimistic on the country’s prospects next year with most of the six industries seen to perform better next year.
“We are looking at 2010 with guarded optimism,’ Schumacher said after hearing the presentation of the leaders of these major growth drivers at the ECCP’s recent forum dubbed Economic Outlook 2010: The Philippine Business Environment in Light of Developments in the World Economy.
Presenting their respective industry’s projections for 2010 were Philippine Agricultural Development and Commercial Corp. president Mariz Agbon, Business Process Association of the Philippines chief executive officer Oscar Sañez, Jones Lang Lasalle Philippines Inc. chairman Jose Fernando Camus, Semiconductor Electronics Industries in the Philippines Inc. chairman Arthur Young, Philippine Travel Agencies Association president Ma. Paz Alberto, and Philippine Retail Association vice president Paul Santos.
Young said the electronics industry, which directly employs 450,000 individuals and another 1.20 million indirectly, expects a double-digit growth in 2010 and rake in $29 billion to $30 billion in export revenues. This, Young said, will help the industry recover lost footing in 2008 and 2009 when the industry suffered declining export receipts.
Young sees the uptick in consumer spending in the United States and increase in the purchase of hybrid cars, smart phones, PDAs, laptops, flat panels and medical equipment in fast-growing markets such as China and India as good reasons to be optimistic.
Sañez, meanwhile, said revenues from the BPO sector is expected to grow to $9.50 billion in 2010 and then $12 billion in 2011, especially with big investments spreading rapidly to the countryside. Aside from the voice segment, growth will be strong in back-office services such as publishing, finance, corporate services, design, and creative services.
Agbon, for his part, said businessmen from Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Kuwait, and Korea have expressed interest to invest in the country’s agriculture sector which makes the outlook over the next five years very positive.
Agbon said the 2005 to 2010 medium term plan of creating two million hectares of agricultural land is also almost accomplished with 1.60 million hectares already covered.
On the tourism side, Alberto said there will be a notable expansion in tourist arrivals over the next two years with major hotels slated to open next year. Arrivals, both of foreign visitors and balikbayans, could go up by 16 percent as they come here to enjoy shopping; eco-tourism; and from meetings, incentives, conventions, and exhibitions.
The passage of the new Tourism Law, Alberto said, will help the country address its deficiencies in promotions, infrastructure and product diversity.
Camus said tourism and BPO firms will help the property sector intensify its growth with the need for more Grade A office spaces for the outsourcing firms, as well as new hotels and airports to service the influx of tourists.
Santos said retail expansion in 2010 will be more pronounced in the provinces as retailers have noticed that people are willing to spend money where they live if given the opportunity. Consumer spending will also go to higher gears due to the 2010 general elections.
(Source: Manila Bulletin)