PEZA urges SoKor firms told to position their biz in PH ahead of PH-Korea FTA

The Philippine Economic Zone Authority (PEZA) has urged South Korea firms to explore Philippine investment opportunities as Manila and Seoul gird to implement their free trade agreement (FTA) early next year.

In a virtual investment forum of the PEZA with Korean firms Tuesday, Philippine Trade and Investment Center-Seoul commercial counselor Jose Ma. Dinsay said his office has received inquiries from Korean firms on investment opportunities in the Philippines as the Philippines-Korea FTA will enter into force in 2022.

“As early as now, we would like to encourage the Korean companies to explore opportunities in the Philippines, so by the time that the FTA will be effective, they will immediately benefit from all the features that the FTA can offer,” Dinsay said.

He added Korean firms may look into investing in manufacturing of vehicle parts and semiconductors, food processing and food production, renewable energy, smart cities, real estate, software and game development, and tourism.

“In fact, we are working with one company right now for a possible establishment of (a) food-related facility in the country somewhere in Mindanao,” he said.

Just last month, Trade Secretary Ramon Lopez and his Korean counterpart Minister Yeo Han-Koo concluded talks on the Philippines-Korea FTA.

Both parties target to sign the deal before February 2022.

PEZA deputy director general Tereso Panga has encouraged Korean investors eyeing to establish their businesses in the Philippines to locate inside PEZA economic zones to enjoy full ownership of their operation.

Panga also cited the incentives under the Corporate Recovery and Tax Incentives for Enterprises (CREATE) Law when investing in PEZA and other investment promotion agencies in the country.

Under the CREATE Law, companies can enjoy an income tax holiday (ITH) of four to seven years and special corporate income tax or enhanced deductions for five years. (PNA)