Manila, Philippines – SINCE its establishment in 1978, more than 800,000 jobs in the country have been created by member-companies of the European Chamber of Commerce of the Philippines (ECCP) as the influential business group recently marked its 40th anniversary.
President of ECCP Guenter Taus said that the business group has played a significant role in promoting stronger trade and investment ties between the Philippines and the European Union (EU).
Taus added that the business group has been working closely with the Philippine government through its advocacy tools in promoting policies that would improve the business environment in the country.
The ECCP, together with the EU-Philippines Business Network, issues advocacy tools, such as letters to members of the government, draft of bills, position papers on proposed reforms or current issues and advocacy papers.
It also lists recommendations in sectors that would enable long-term economic growth in the country, including those in agriculture, automotive, consumer goods and retail, energy and renewables, environment and water, energy efficiency, food and beverages, health care and pharmaceuticals, human capital, information technology and business-process outsourcing, infrastructure and transportation, manufacturing, maritime, tax and financial services, as well as tourism.
Data from the EU showed that its bilateral trade with the Philippines in the first half of 2017 grew by 17 percent to $7.8 billion. Philippine exports to the 28 European Union member-states increased by 36 percent in the first six months of the past year, up from the same period in 2016, with the help of the EU Generalized Scheme of Preferences Plus, which allows 6,274 goods from the Philippines to enter the European Union market duty-free.
In 2016 the EU was the largest Philippines investor. About 28 percent or P62 billion of investments in the country in 2016 originated from European Union companies.
Taus remarked, “Looking into the future, it is my hope that the ECCP will continue to do the good work it has done in the past. [And it is our] hope is that the Chamber will continue to serve the European-Philippine business community with the same vigor and commitment it [displayed in] the past 40 years,” he added.
The ECCP has gained nearly 800 member-companies, ranging from medium-sized to multinational corporations since its inception.