Japanese Investors Plan Business Expansion, Investments in the Philippines

TOKYO, JAPAN – Several Japanese firms, most of them engaged in manufacturing, have expressed desires to invest or expand their businesses in the Philippines, the Philippine government announced on its website.

Philippine President Benigno S. Aquino III witnessed the signing of letters of intent between the Philippine Economic Zone Authority (PEZA) and several Japanese companies that plan to invest or expand their businesses in the Philippines.

These Japanese companies are engaged in manufacturing office equipments, electronics, ships, and medical devices.

One of these companies is Bemac Uzushio Electric Co. Ltd, the first company to set up production of electric tricycles in the country. Its P300-million facility produces 1,000 units each year.

Bemac Uzushio is planning to develop, manufacture and sell four-wheeled electric vehicles by middle of next year for an investment of P100 million. The company wants the Philippines to be its electric vehicle manufacturing hub.

Brothers Industries Ltd also signed a letter of intent with PEZA for the manufacture of printer-related products and components. It plans to invest P5.8 billion over five years and eyes the employment of 5,500 Filipino workers.

Canon Inc. meanwhile plans to manufacture a new product with an average export sales volume of 1.3 million pieces, valued at US$133 million per year. Canon has 3,000 workers in the Philippines.

Another Japanese company that has shown interest in expanding its Philippine operations is Funai Electric Co. Ltd., which manufactures printers and digital media products. It plans to expand its operations in Lipa City, Batangas with an investment of US$30 million.

Seiko Epson Corp. is also planning to increase its operations in the Philippines by building a new facility worth US$160.6 million in Batangas in 2017. Seiko Epson eyes the production of inkjet printers, and projector smart glasses with its new investment, and grow its total labor pool in the country to as much as 20,000.

Arkray Inc. also signified its intention to invest P300 million in the Philippines by 2016 and P100 million by 2018. Arkray is engaged in in-vitro diagnostics, and in the research, development, manufacture, service and distribution of in-vitro diagnostic products.

Biotech Japan Corp. meanwhile has decided to invest P150 million in a food production facility next year. The government said it hopes the new investment would benefit Filipino farmers, dietitians and nutritionists through the transfer of technology.

Japan’s JMS intends to invest US$38.5 million in a factory that will manufacture and sell medical devices for infusions and transfusion therapy and hemodialysis treatment in 2016. The project will augment JMS’ export of US$26 million and the company expects to hire 500 workers over a five-year period starting this year.

Terumo, a Japanese company engaged in manufacturing medical devices, is planning to enhance its production facility in the country, focusing more on producing high-performance product lines.

Tokai Medical Products has already started the construction of its 400-million-yen facility in the Philippines in the first quarter of this year. The new facility is seen to become a global platform for manufacturing aortic catheters and intra-aortic occlusion catheters for heart patients, intended for the Japan and US markets. The company is also interested in promoting research and development programs that will help pediatric cardiac medicine.

Tsuneishi Shipbuilding Co. Ltd. meanwhile has expressed its intention to expand its facility in the Philippines to make it the company’s ASEAN mother shipyard and shipbuilding hub in Asia.

Tsuneishi has invested more than US$600 million and has employed 13,000 people since it began operations in 1994.

Among those who joined the President during the occasion were Trade Secretary Gregory Domingo and PEZA Director General Lilia de Lima. – BusinessNewsAsia.com

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