Plans are underway for the staging of an investment conference in Doha aimed at attracting Qatari investments into the Philippines, it was announced.
A high-level Philippine delegation led by Charito Plaza, the director general of the Philippine Economic Zone Authority (Peza), will present the ‘Philippine Investments Conference’ on February 16 at the Ritz-Carlton Doha.
The delegation will also include top business leaders from the Philippine Chamber of Commerce & Industry during the conference, said Joseph Timothy Rivera, chairman of the Association of Filipino Real Estate Executives in Qatar (Afreeq).
Rivera stressed that the conference will feature exclusive Philippine investment offerings to high net worth Qatari businessmen.
The incentives – which include both zero taxes and customs duty and VAT exemptions, 100% foreign owned entities, and 75-year leasehold on land holdings – among others, are part of Peza’s thrust for “the effective management and promotion of economic zones and generating more foreign investments to the Philippines.”
Rivera also said the conference is part of Peza’s “three-nation roadshow” in the Gulf and “will also serve as a precursor to a possible state visit of President Rodrigo Duterte to the region on a later date.” The first two legs of the roadshow are slated on February 11 and 12 in Riyadh and February 13 to 14 in the UAE. Only recently, Plaza appointed Rivera, as well as Philippine Business Council-Qatar chairman Greg Loayon, and Doha-based executives Felipe Montealto Jr and Adel Sa’adeh as her “special advisers” abroad.
In a statement, Peza said Rivera, Loayon, Montealto, and Sa’adeh were among the first batch of “promotion emissaries” for the Middle East, Europe, and South East Asia from Qatar, which was selected by the agency as its strategic hub for the region.
“The above-mentioned consultants, who were appointed for their integrity, credibility, and willingness to voluntarily work for the economic gains of the Philippines, will serve as ‘goodwill business ambassadors’ of Peza, who will be assisting the director general in implementing Peza’s new thrusts in developing untapped investment markets in their assigned territories with their avowed mission to generate more foreign investments for the Philippines.
“When travelling overseas, they will carry out priority meetings at the request of the Peza director general, including lobbying for market access or leading events for Philippine economic zones,” the Peza statement further said.
Plaza added, “Peza is so thankful for all the help extended to us by our special advisers, particularly in the Middle East as Peza needs all the help it can muster worldwide to bring in more foreign direct investment into the country and into Peza to help create more employment opportunities for our people and free our citizens from the bondage of poverty, thus uplifting the lives of our countrymen and improving the quality of life of Filipinos.”
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