MANILA — President Benigno Aquino III considers his delegation’s trip to Europe this week as successful partly because of additional investment inflows to the Philippines.
In a briefing with Filipino journalist in Berlin, Germany, which was aired over state radio station Radio ng Bayan Saturday, Aquino said they have met with 19 European companies interested in investing in the Philippines.
He said some USD 2.3-billion investments are targeted to be placed in various sectors such as manufacturing, energy, information technology, infrastructure and transportation.
Of the total, some USD 908 million worth of investment have been committed while prospective investments amounts to about USD 1.47 billion, he said.
Aquino said these investments are seen to provide job opportunities to some 55,500 Filipinos.
Relatively, the President said European investors now understand better the Philippines’ reason for bringing its territorial dispute with China before the United Nations.
He said European investors now have deeper appreciation on why the issue needs international arbitration.
Last March, the government submitted a 4,000-page memorial before the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) arbitral tribunal to explain its side and ownership on some islands in the West Philippine Sea.
The memorial was made after several instances wherein China’s coast guard prevented boats used by the Philippine government that will bring supplies to members of the Philippine Navy who were stationed at the Ayungin Shoal.
China has been claiming ownership to islands in the South China Sea and its issue with the Philippines is not unique as several other countries have the same territorial claims problem.