Marcos trip yields $1.3-B US investment pledges
WASHINGTON—President Marcos’ five-day official visit to the United States yielded some $1.3 billion in investment pledges from various American companies that may generate over 6,700 local jobs.
Speaking with journalists before his flight to the United Kingdom, the President described his trip as the “most constructive and meaningful” since assuming office as the country’s 17th head of state in June last year.
“Our discussions were very productive,” Marcos said at a news briefing before hopping on the presidential flight to London to attend King Charles III’s coronation in London on Saturday. The President is expected back in the Philippines by May 7, two days before the biannual Leaders’ Summit of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (Asean) in Jakarta, which he is also expected to attend.
The new US investments covered a range of industries, including agriculture, pharmaceuticals, clean energy, health care, business process management, electric vehicle industries and digital infrastructure.
“They are all committed to be part of this development journey that we have embarked upon,” he said, referring to the American companies.
“When realized, these investments will support our country’s economic recovery efforts and further strengthen the foundations of our economic environment,” he added.
Marcos also noted that the interest of American businesses in the Philippines was a “welcome sign of their trust and confidence in the Philippines as an investment destination.”
“Together, we will be working on addressing some of our key economic challenges, particularly food, energy and health security, digital connectivity and the cross-cutting issues of climate change and pandemic preparedness,” he said.
Quite ‘fruitful’ US trip
“The discussions that we had with the US business community also affirm the optimism [with] which international investors view the Philippines today. It was [with] great pride that I received their praises for the talent, ingenuity [and] work ethic of Filipinos, this has become the main driving force for bringing their investments to our country,” Marcos added.
Trade Secretary Alfredo Pascual, who was part of the President’s entourage, agreed that the US trip was quite “fruitful.” Pascual said that enhancing the Philippines’ bilateral relationship with other countries, including its peers in Asia, plays a significant role as the Philippines pursues economic recovery and expansion postpandemic.
“This is crucial in addressing global challenges, while promoting peace, stability and economic growth,” said the trade official.
Pascual was expected to precede the President in Jakarta to attend the 22nd Asean Economic Community Council and other ministerial meetings ahead of the leaders’ summit.
Pascual noted that the Asean meetings also present important opportunities for him to discuss, together with his foreign counterparts from the regional bloc, the Philippines’ trade, investment, health and agricultural priorities.