PCCI sees high economic growth starting 2014By Riza T. Olchondra
Philippine Daily Inquirer
The Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry expects the domestic economy to grow at a high rate starting 2014.
PCCI vice chairman Donald Dee said in a yearend briefing that the domestic economy was expected to grow “beyond 7 percent” by 2014, saying next year (2013) “will be the year to prepare and become more competitive.”
Dee said that the momentum on the government’s infrastructure spending and public-private partnership (PPP) program, as well as businesses’ preparations for regional integration in the Asean, was expected to spur investments and business activity.
PCCI president Miguel Varela said that foreign investments and international trade would also grow, judging from the many inquiries for trade missions for various countries.
“There is much potential for further trade and investment, particularly from non-traditional markets like the Czech Republic, Turkey, Oman, Qatar, South Africa and Latin American countries,” Varela said.
This year alone, PCCI hosted about 20 trade missions and foreign business delegations. These included the non-traditional markets as well as Japan, Germany, Italy, India, Saudi Arabia, Taiwan and the United States.
Varela said these countries were looking at Mindanao following the signing of the historic Bangsamoro Framework Agreement, the peace accord that is seen to open the gates to investment inflows and realize the full potentials of Mindanao, the country’s food basket.
“Our local chambers are already collecting data on the sectors which have the most potential in each region as well as cooperating with their respective LGUs to improve the business process and licensing procedures. Doing so and bringing investors to Mindanao will help secure long-term peace and stability in the region,” Varela said.
Varela said the PCCI was optimistic that the current economic growth would continue to unleash the strong fundamentals of the economy even as the group remained mindful of the challenges that still needed to be addressed to secure the country’s proper place in global business and international trade.