MANILA, Philippines—The Export Development Council (EDC) has begun consultations for the drafting of a new three-year export road map, which will contain strategies aimed at doubling exports to $120 billion by 2016.
But this target export figure is already getting “harder to attain,” admitted Sergio R. Ortiz-Luis, president of the Philippine Exporters Confederation Inc.
“I don’t know if [EDC] will still put that target [in the Philippine Export Development Plan] to double the exports because it’s getting harder to attain. Our services sector though is growing, and this may help,” Ortiz-Luis said.
“If the plan is to double exports, that is going to be with the help of the services sector. The government needs to address some of the problems hounding the growth, particularly for the small and medium enterprises (SMEs), because they’re not moving at all.”
Ortiz-Luis noted that many countries across Asia “have solved the problem of financing for SMEs. That’s something we have yet to resolve.”
This year, the government is standing by its export target of $81.53 billion on the back of rising non-electronics shipments and a robust services sector.
As previously reported, the country aims to chalk up $61.10 billion in merchandise shipments, and $20.43 billion in services exports for 2013, the Department of Trade and Industry said.
Under the Philippine Export Development Plan of 2011-2013, the focus was on several core product and market strategies.
Key sectors included information technology and business process outsourcing; electronics; agribusiness, including fresh, processed, and marine food products and coconut; minerals; shipbuilding; motor vehicle parts; garments and textile; home style and décor, and wearables.
In terms of product strategies, the road map will enable exporters to move up the value chain, participate in higher-value processes in the global supply chain, and develop linkages for organic, natural, and certification-based offerings.
Under the 2011-2013 PEDP, exports are not only envisioned to more than double by the end of the current administration’s term, but also generate 9.1 million jobs, while helping to raise the country’s gross domestic product by 58 percent.