PH not among Taiwan investors’ favorite sites
Posted 2 years ago
Taiwan Economic Cultural Office (TECO) is batting for the Philippines to become a destination for Taiwanese investors whose favorite relocation sites in southeast Asia are mainly Vietnam, Thailand and Indonesia.
Alfred Y.H. Wang, TECO Economic Counselor, told reporters during a press conference for the “Meet Taiwan,” networking event that aims to promote Taiwan as hub for Meetings, Incentive, Travel, Conferences, Exhibitions (MICE) industry, that many Taiwanese investors who have been in China for the past 20 years are moving out of mainland China because the Chinese government is “not so friendly to foreign investors” and are relocating to some areas in ASEAN.
“These Taiwanese firms are coming to ASEAN countries like Thailand and Indonesia but their favorite is Vietnam,” Tseng said.
“We tried to make it the Philippines for Taiwanese investors.”
Taiwanese investments to the Philippines last year went down 61 percent to P4 billion from P10 billion in 2017.
Tseng expressed hopes that once the free-visa program is extended, more Taiwanese firms would consider the Philippines as a good relocation site.
The free-visa program will expire on July 31 this year. Taiwan authorities are expected to make an announcement soon if it will be extended or not.
This program, which also includes Thailand and Brunei, has boosted travel by Filipinos. Last year, there were more than 410,000 Filipino travelers to Taiwan. TECO is hoping to exceed that record number, targeting 500,000 travelers this year.
Another favorable factor that may entice Taiwanese to consider the Philippine is the new Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) regulation which now allows the registration of One Person Corporation, a corporation with a single stockholder.
Tseng cited this new SEC rules for relaxing the 60-40 foreign equity ownership rules for foreign investors in the country.
These factors should help boost the chance of Philippines to become a choice for Taiwanese companies.
“In my economic division at TECO, we try to help Taiwanese firms find the land and local partners,” he said adding that they facilitate Taiwanese firms with the help of investment promotion agencies such as the Board of Investments, Philippine Economic Zone Authority, Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority, and the SEC.
According to Tseng, some of the Taiwanese investors are engaged in manufacturing operations are mainly located in the industrial zones in Batangas, Cavite and Carmona. Some are also looking at Clark and Subic.
Tseng further noted that many small Taiwanese firms are already considering the Philippines. “They maybe small but they are many, which I think is better than having one big investor,” he said.