BOI-Peza investment pledges rose slightly in ’12

Commitments fell short of target due to ‘challenges’

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Committed investments with the Board of Investments (BOI), an attached agency of the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), and the Philippine Economic Zone Authority (Peza) grew slightly in 2012 amid continued optimism over the country’s economic prospects, officials said.

According to Trade Secretary Gregory Domingo, BOI-Peza total approved investments in 2012 reached P672.25 billion, an increase of 2.29 percent from P657.23 billion in 2011.

Peza reported some P311.9 billion in approved commitments in 2012 from P288 billion in 2011, short of the goal of P323 billion.

The rest, or P360.35 billion, was committed with the BOI, outgoing Trade Undersecretary Cristino Panlilio told the Inquirer in a phone interview.

The BOI had wanted to generate about P400 billion worth of investments in 2012, having posted P368 billion in 2011. However, Panlilio said it was challenging for investors interested in certain sectors to get permits, especially in energy and mining, partly due to opposition from various groups.

He added that timing-wise, some investments that were applied for in 2012 were only recently approved, which means they will be counted in the investment commitments for 2013.

In the mining sector, there were additional bottlenecks such as the lack of a mining revenue law on which to base new mining contracts.

Industry stakeholders, through the Chamber of Mines of the Philippines, are also seeking clarification on the implementing rules of recent mining policy reforms that have to do with contract reviews.

Also on Monday, the National Statistical Coordination Board (NSCB) reported that approved investments of foreign and Filipino nationals coursed through all investment promotion agencies amounted to P397.2 billion in the first nine months of 2012.

The figures, NSCB said, were based on commitments approved by the investment promotion agencies, namely: BOI, Clark Development Corp., Peza, Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority, as well as the Authority of the Freeport Area of Bataan, BOI-Autonomous Region of Muslim Mindanao and Cagayan Economic Zone Authority.

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