Latest ASEAN news

Local and foreign investors invited to invest in fishery upgrade projects including canning and food processing plants in Mon State.

Local and foreign investors invited to invest in fishery upgrade projects including canning and food processing plants in Mon State.

According to the Mon State Fishermen's Association, local and foreign investors are being invited to upgrade fishery products in Mon State's fisheries sector.

Mon State produces between 100,000 and 200,000 tonnes of fishery products annually and is mainly exported to China.

According to the Mon State Fishermen's Association, Chairman U Myint Soe said that Investors are invited to invest in Fish canning factory, a food processing plant and a refrigeration plant and will be provided with the necessary raw materials.

He also said that although the invitation for investment has been invited for a long time, the government needs to cooperate.

Watch the full story on YOUTUBE TV:

Source: BETV Business News

Reporter by Mi Su Su Mar

Original Published Date: August 31, 2021

Myanmar tamarind price rises again due to Bangladesh demand


Myanmar tamarind price rises again due to Bangladesh demand

Tamarind, grown in Myanmar, has been decreasing in price and has stopped trading since the end of April. It has seen a sharp rise in prices starting from the first week of August due to demand from Bangladesh, said the tamarind traders from the Mandalay market.

The price of seeded tamarinds has risen from K800 to K1,100 per viss (one viss equals 1.6 kg), while seedless tamarinds are priced at K2,300 per viss, up from K1,800 in the Mandala market. Tamarinds are selling well in the market. “This is a good year for tamarind price. At this moment, there is no buyer for plum. But, tamarinds prices have risen again due to the demand from Bangladesh. Now, the tamarind growers are happy as they are getting a good price this year. The tamarind is a marketable product in foreign countries.

Last year, tamarind was demanded from China and India. Myanmar people use tamarind in traditional cuisine besides making traditional medicines,” said U Soe Win Myint, owner of Soe Win Myint commodity depot.
Tamarind trees grow across the country. Especially, the trees are mostly found in the central regions of Myanmar. They can be harvested only once a year in the summer.

Tamarinds from Kyaukpadaung, Popa, Pakokku, Yamethin, Zeepingyi and Pinlaebu towns are sending to the market. All the tamarind producing areas across the country will supply abundant tamarinds to markets in the pre-Thingyan Festival period.

Reported by Min Htet Aung (Mandalay Sub-Printing House)/GNLM

Source: The Global New Light of Myanmar

Picture source: The Global New Light of Myanmar

Original Published Date:28 August, 2021

Hon Hai aims to take e-vehicle venture with Thai partner public

Taiwan-based manufacturing giant Hon Hai Precision Industry Co., which has moved aggressively into the electric vehicle market, is looking to take an EV joint venture with Thailand's state-owned oil supplier PTT Public Co. Ltd. public. At an online forum -- The Future Energy Asia -- held Friday, Hon Hai Chairman Liu Young-way (劉揚偉) said his ambition was for the EV joint venture to become a benchmark for EV development in Thailand and for it to launch an initial public offering in 2025. Liu said the partnership is expected to lead to a comprehensive EV ecosystem in Thailand.

At the end of May, Hon Hai, also known as Foxconn internationally, announced it had signed a memorandum of understanding with PTT to enter the EV market in Thailand by setting up an open platform for producing EVs and key components for the EV sector there. Under the MOU, the platform, featuring hardware and software services and to be built on Hon Hai's MIH Open Platform, will be available to all auto companies in Thailand looking to boost sales of EVs at home and in the ASEAN region, according to the two partners.

In Thailand, the government has a 30/30 EV plan in place that targets 30 percent of all production to be zero-emission vehicles by 2030, in a bid to produce 725,000 emission-free passenger cars by that year. At the forum, Liu said the partnership with PTT will use a Build Operate and Localize (BOL) business model as part of Hon Hai's goal to forge multinational cooperation in EV development.

Source: Focus Taiwan

Indonesia launches online push to streamline investment permits

Indonesia launched on Monday a website to process investment permits, which the government hailed as an important milestone in reforms aimed at making it easier and quicker to do business in Southeast Asia's largest economy.

President Joko Widodo has vowed to overcome lingering hurdles such as red tape, rigid labour laws and poor infrastructure in his second term to compete with neighbours such as Vietnam and Thailand to attract foreign investment.

The "Online Single Submission" website will process investment proposals based on the level of risk, with lower risk investments needing only to register and medium ones to meet national standards.

"We want our investment climate to become more conducive ... to increase investors' confidence, to create jobs and become a solution to the problem of rising unemployment because of the pandemic," Jokowi, as the president is popularly known, said during the website's launch.

The website is part of a controversial Job Creation law, which passed last year despite protests from unions, environmentalists and other critics who view it as too pro-business.

Jokowi has tried to digitalize investment applications before, but it could still take months if not years to process a proposal in certain sectors.

The website gives Jokowi's new investment ministry greater authority so that it can intervene when local authorities take too long to respond, officials say.

Indonesia pulled out of economic recession in the second quarter with 7.07% gross domestic product growth and investment up 7.54%, but analysts warn the recovery faces a setback due to a resurgence in COVID-19 cases. read more

The new website, which was set up by telecommunication firm Indosat (ISAT.JK), has eliminated application costs for enterprises of up to 5 billion rupiah ($347,705) in size, investment minister Bahlil Lahadalia said at the launch.


($1 = 14,380.0000 rupiah)

Source: Reuters

Reporter: Gayatri Suroyo

Editor: Ed Davies

Original published date: 09 August, 2021

Laos to increase coffee exports to EU

Laos will be able to export more coffee to the European Union (EU) states following the adoption of a new roadmap for exports.

The roadmap is aimed at increasing productivity and sustainability in production and processing, while simultaneously enhancing the capacity of Lao exporters, improving the domestic economy and securing better lives for rural citizens.
The Coffee Sector Export Roadmap offers guidance on strengthening quality in compliance with international standards, fostering dynamism in the sector, and connecting to global opportunities.

Small producers and firms can also benefit from sections of the roadmap on capacity building, organisation and trade information.
The coffee industry in Laos has great potential in terms of value, being the main cash crop for many small-scale farmers. Unsurprisingly, coffee is Laos’ third largest agricultural export. Coffee is currently exported to more than 26 countries in Asia, Europe and North America. 

However, the coffee sector faces pressing challenges that limit efforts to engage in regional and global coffee trading. These constraints vary from reaching buyers in high-potential markets, improving systematic quality management, and increasing the productivity and sustainability of the sector. In addition, the Covid-19 pandemic is exacerbating existing problems and further complicating the future of Lao coffee farmers and enterprises. 

The launch of the roadmap saw 80 participants meeting in person and online. The Ministry of Industry and Commerce, along with the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry, led the roadmap’s development.

The International Trade Centre provided technical assistance as part of the Asean Regional Integration Support from the European Union (ARISE Plus), an EU-funded initiative focusing on promoting inclusive economic growth, climate change resilience, mitigating vulnerability and job creation in Laos.

The Coffee Sector Export Roadmap is also aligned with government priorities and ongoing initiatives in the sector, including support for the goals of the Lao Coffee Sector Development Strategy till 2025. Officials said it is crucial for the country to continue  collaboration in implementing the roadmap.

During a discussion at the launch of the roadmap on Friday, participants shared ideas for the adoption of the roadmap.
“The coffee sector has become an important source of agricultural production and exports. Going forward, the sector has even more potential to contribute to economic growth and job creation. This roadmap provides a detailed action plan to leverage the strengths and addresses the constraints in domestic competitiveness,” said the Minister of Industry and Commerce, Khampheng Xaysompheng.

The Governor of Champassak province, Vilayvong Boudakham, said: “We see a big potential to export more coffee to the EU, especially organic and fair trade certified coffee. European consumers are ready to pay a higher price for their cup of coffee, if it is organic and respectful of the environment, and if it provides decent jobs and makes a positive social impact in communities.”

The Ambassador of the EU to Laos, Ms Ina Marčiulionytė, added, “This inclusive approach ensures that the roadmap is designed to reflect the sector’s goals, and outlines a realistic and effective path for achieving them.”

By Times Reporters 
Original published date: 6 Jul 2021

Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar, Vietnam and Thailand (CLMVT) set course for snapback from Covid

The government has carried out a host of sweeping economic reforms amid Covid-19 to achieve sustainable and inclusive economic growth in the long run and remains fully determined to turn the crisis into a major catalyst for growth during and after the pandemic to build a stronger socio-economic system that is resilient to future crises.

Cambodian Ambassador to Thailand Ouk Sorphorn made the remark on August 24, the first day of the CLMVT Plus Forum 2021, to an audience of leaders and businessmen of the five inland ASEAN countries.

Sorphorn underscored that Cambodia has drawn up a series of focused reforms and measures, including the introduction of new investment law and government credit guarantee; adoption of the e-commerce law and associated strategies; drafting of a law on public-private partnerships; development of an integrated online business registration platform; and a number of initiatives concerning the digital economy.

These incorporate tactics designed to inspire a shift from traditional diplomacy to a newer and more resilient model that transforms challenges into opportunities for Cambodia and more effectively promotes international trade, foreign direct investment, tourism, cultural and sports exchanges.

Minister of Economy and Finance Aun Pornmoniroth last week noted that the Covid-19 crisis had ravaged economies around the world, Cambodia included, since its inception last year.

However, he said, Cambodia has been preparing the 2021-2023 recovery plan which pivots on three priority strategies to return the economy to a high growth path – “economic recovery”, “reforms” and “building resilience”.


Author: May Kunmakara

Source: The Phnom Penh Post

For full article, please read here

Original publication date: 25 August 2021

ASEAN economic officials welcome new areas for cooperation with the United States

MANILA — Association of Southeast Asian Nations’ (ASEAN) Senior Economic Officials (SEOM) met with Deputy Assistant US Trade Representative (AUSTR) for Southeast Asia and the Pacific Marta Prado for the 34th SEOM-AUSTR Dialogue Partner Consultations on 14 August 2021 via videoconference. The Philippines was represented by Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) Assistant Secretary Allan B. Gepty.

At the SEOM-AUSTR consultations, officials finalized the 2021-2022 ASEAN-U.S. Trade and Investment Framework Arrangement (TIFA) and Expanded Economic Engagement (E3) Work Plan which will facilitate implementation of cooperation initiatives to support the region’s post-pandemic economic recovery efforts, including in the areas of digital economy, micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs), sustainable development, trade facilitation, labor and environment, among others.

 “The Philippines welcomes the continued engagement and developments of initiatives between ASEAN and US particularly in the areas of Digital Trade, Transparency and Good Regulatory Practices, MSME Development, Trade Facilitation, and the ASEAN Single Window. These are important areas of cooperation especially in the post pandemic period.” Gepty said.

During the SEOM-AUSTR consultations, Assistant Secretary Gepty also emphasized that with the current challenges and the evolving business environment, cooperation activities and trade rules must keep abreast with recent developments, and must remain relevant.

The ASEAN-US trade and economic relations is guided by the TIFA concluded in August 2006, which serves as a mechanism to strengthen ASEAN-US trade and economic ties. The finalized 2021-2022 Work Plan will be submitted to Economic Ministers at the ASEAN Economic Ministers-United States Trade Representative (AEM-USTR) Consultations in September 2021 for endorsement and subsequent implementation. 

Date of Release: 25 August 2021

Source: Click here

The Philippines: Economic recovery and resilience, core of 6th annual manufacturing summit

MAKATI CITY – The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) and the Board of Investments (BOI), with the support of the Federation of Philippine Industries, will hold the Manufacturing Summit 2021 on 25 – 26 August 2021, from 1:30 to 5:00 PM, online via Zoom with the theme, “Securing the Recovery of Filipino Enterprises and the Resilience of Filipino Industries.”

As the pandemic continues to disrupt the global market and the economies of nations across the world, the Philippines has emerged from a recession by posting a positive gross domestic product (GDP) growth rate of 11.8% in the second quarter of 2021. The manufacturing industry is among the leading sectors behind this recovery, growing by 22.3% in the same period.

In this context and in line with the country’s Inclusive Innovation Industrial Strategy (i3S) and the National Employment Recovery Strategy (NERS), the Manufacturing Summit will discuss concrete measures towards securing the recovery of the country’s enterprises and ensuring the resilience of local industries. These would include policy reforms that the national government is putting in place and the various support programs being implemented to enable firms and businesses to regain and strengthen their capabilities for growth under a new normal market environment. In addition, the Summit would also cover the plans and means for stimulating the digital transformation of the country, which is essential for industrial competitiveness in the global economy. 

Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) Secretary Ramon M. Lopez will keynote the summit on 25 August and discuss the government’s support for the growth and resurgence of the country’s manufacturing industry. On 26 August, National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) Secretary Karl Kendrick Chua will present an assessment of the economy’s recovery and the government’s plan towards national resilience.

Other speakers include Department of Finance (DOF) Assistant Secretary Juvy Danofrata, Board of Investments (BOI) Executive Director Corazon Halili-Dichosa, Department of Science and Technology (DOST) Undersecretary Rowena Guevara, Philippine Economic Zone Authority (PEZA) Director-General Charito Plaza, Federation of Philippine Industries (FPI) President Alberto Lina, and Philippine Chamber of Commerce, Inc. (PCCI) President Ambassador Benedicto Yujuico. They will be joined by private sector experts from the World Economic Forum (WEF), McKinsey Singapore, and D&L Industries.

This year’s summit will also feature the induction of the DTI as partner of the WEF’s Global Smart Industry Readiness Index (SIRI) initiative. Through the initiative, DTI aims to accelerate the deployment and adoption of SIRI as a recognized standard for Industry 4.0 benchmarking and transformation in the country.

The summit is expected to gather online participants coming from all over the country, including key officials from the national and local governments, representatives from industry associations and business chambers, and other stakeholders from the industry, micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs), academe, the research community, and civil society.

It will be livestreamed on the official Facebook page of DTI and DTI-CIG. Program details are available thru this link.

Date of Release: 24 August 2021

For the original release, please click here.

The Philippines: CITEM brings Philippine food sourcing to the digital frontier

IFEX Philippines, the signature event for the food trade sector organized by the Center for International Trade Expositions and Missions, (CITEM) will present its very first online iteration, the IFEX Digital Expo, on 23 – 25 September 2021.

The event will continue its mandate of promoting Philippine food champions geared towards showcasing a wide array of diverse food products and ingredients that are uniquely Filipino

Hosted on the Hopin online event platform, the IFEX Digital Expo will feature a main stage that will showcase a program on the latest developments and innovations in the food industry. Simultaneously, there will be breakout sessions on the platform where participants can explore segment-specific topics, discussions and other featured content. The platform  also  has an automated matching feature  where users can meet and build their network within the community. The expo feature on Hopin, on the other hand, is available for those who want to explore business support organizations, food brands, and export enablers.

“As we continue and grow our efforts to provide a comprehensive and unique trade show experience for all our stakeholders, we want to make sure that CITEM delivers the best service at every touchpoint whether it be for on-site, hybrid, or fully digital events,” said Pauline Suaco-Juan, Executive Director of CITEM.

CITEM has been moving towards the digitalization of its initiatives to adapt to the dynamic needs of the global food community. Aside from the digital expo, the event will also mark the public launch of the new promotions website, and the new lead generation platform,  

Two new websites for the food community, a website synonymous to the banner brand for all of CITEM’s food events and initiatives for the Philippine food sector, will feature stories about Philippine ingredients, flavors, processes and techniques, recipes, heritage, culinary talents and regional specialties. These stories will be strategically developed and promoted to build interest and start conversations about Philippine food products.

Meanwhile, is the agency’s new promotion and lead generation platform for the country’s food export industry. It will house the digital storefronts of top Philippine food manufacturers and suppliers and showcase their product offerings. The platform, available 24/7 year-round, will also allow buyers from all over the world to directly connect with local companies they wish to have business with. is envisioned to be a sourcing platform that features digital storefronts of our food exporters and showcases their top-line products. Ready to serve the global market, also has a business-matching facility to connect our exhibitors with international buyers much easier,” adds Rowena Mendoza, OIC Head of CITEM’s Operations Group for the Food Sector.

Other features of the platform include a space for digital events that focus on industry insights, best practices, and new market demands, exclusively for registered users.

To help exhibitors maximize the potential of, CITEM is also running content amelioration programs to assist MSME’s in the production of product photos and brand copies meant to optimize both the user experience and their searchability online. This program started with a pilot batch of 100 MSMEs with top food stylist Chichi Tullao and food photographer Justin de Jesus helping in the production.

For all these efforts, CITEM enlisted the expertise of premier storytellers in the food industry: Joey Ong, advertising veteran and Managing Director/Executive Creative Director of Dojo as Chief Storyteller, and Angelo Comsti, chef, food writer, and author of the bestselling cookbooks, From our Table to Yours and Also Filipino, as Editor-in-Chief of the two platforms.

“CITEM, works hand in hand with these food luminaries along with ODV Creative who offered strategic support for content production and event management, and UM Philippines for web development. We are proud to have built a homegrown website and we look forward to building a community that will let the world savor the best of Philippine food,” added Suaco-Juan.

Food companies and buyers are encouraged to register and be the first to experience the shift to digital. Application for the initial batch of exhibitors is until 25 August 2021. Visit the links below to register.

Link to Exhibitor Registration:

Link to Buyer Registration: 

Date of Release: 24 August 2021

For the original source, please click here.

The Philippines: ASEAN-UK economic relations strengthened

MANILA — As the United Kingdom (UK) becomes Association of Southeast Asian Nations’ (ASEAN’s) newest Dialogue Partner, ASEAN looks forward to more robust economic relations with the said trading partner.

On 11 August 2021 via videoconference, ASEAN Senior Economic Officials (SEOM) met with UK Trade Commissioner Sam Myers and UK Ambassador to ASEAN, His Excellency (H.E.) Jon Lambe at the first SEOM-UK Dialogue Partner Consultations. At the meeting, the Philippines was welcomed as the country coordinator for ASEAN-UK economic relations. The Philippines was represented by Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) Assistant Secretary Allan B. Gepty.

Under this new partnership, ASEAN Member States and the UK will pursue cooperation initiatives to further strengthen trade and investment relations and support post-pandemic economic recovery efforts. Having been granted the Dialogue Partner status, UK and ASEAN will have more regular engagement to discuss the implementation of economic cooperation initiatives.

According to Assistant Secretary Gepty, the UK is a global leader on innovation and digitalization, and as ASEAN enterprises particularly micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) embrace digital transformation, this structured collaboration is not only timely but will also pave the way for a robust innovation environment in the region. 

“The Philippines appreciates the UK’s support to ASEAN in the areas of digital innovation and financial services as these initiatives will significantly advance the region’s digitalization agenda.  We look forward to further expanding ASEAN and UK’s partnership on this front.” said Asec. Gepty.

ASEAN SEOM also lauded the progress of various UK-funded programmes on areas of common interest such as economic recovery, digital innovation, supply chain resilience, financial services, and sustainable growth. These programmes support ASEAN member states in their regional economic integration and post-pandemic economic recovery efforts.

As trade ministers of ASEAN and the UK will meet formally for the first time in September 2021, SEOM also exchanged views on the possible priorities and principles that will set the future direction of ASEAN and UK economic partnership. The Philippines pushed for the inclusion of MSME development, public-private sector partnership, and Technical and Vocational Education Training (TVET), among others.  

Date of Release: 18 August 2021

For the original release, please click here.

The Philippines: Philippines makes compelling case to attract Singapore investors and partners

The Singapore Business Federation, supported by the Philippine Embassy in Singapore, urged Singaporean investors to explore investment and partnership opportunities in the Philippines in a webinar entitled “FYIstival: Expanding Trade and Investment Opportunities in the Philippines” held last 12 August 2021.

“Singapore has traditionally been one of the Philippines’ major investment sources. In 2019, Singapore ranked as our top investment source, with total approved investments of USD3.4-B. Last year, despite the COVID-19 pandemic, investments still amounted to almost P10.0-B or USD201M, making Singapore our fourth top investment source,” Joseph Del Mar Yap, Philippine Ambassador to Singapore said.

The webinar highlighted policy reforms to create a more open economy and attract more investors, including the Corporate Recovery and Tax Incentives for Enterprises (CREATE) Act.

“We see the CREATE law as rationalizing the grant and administration of incentives given to investors.  Where before we had disparate and even confusing pockets of incentive packages offered by different investment promotion agencies, we now have a more or less harmonized, straightforward, easier to understand set of incentives that will help to not only bring down investors’ cost of doing business but also allow them to tap the country’s 108-million market,” said Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) Assistant Secretary Nicanor Bautista, who currently heads DTI’s Foreign Trade Service Corps (FTSC).

Bautista added that CREATE was not designed to be the end-all and be-all of investment promotion but to complement and reinforce the country’s highly skilled, talented, young workforce, a progressively modern infrastructure, much-improved connectivity, a huge middle-income market, and a strong relationship with Singapore’s financial, health, and life sciences, telecoms, manufacturing, and energy sectors.

Carla Grepo, Commercial Counsellor-designate at the Philippine Trade and Investment Center (PTIC) – Singapore, also shared that the CREATE Act reduces the corporate income tax rate by 5%, to 25%, for foreign investors. Other salient features of the CREATE Act are: removing export and nationality bias that used to limit foreign-owned enterprises from both enjoying incentives and selling to the domestic market; and granting the President with the flexibility to grant incentives for strategic investments.

Grepo explained that Singaporean investors can likewise look forward to upcoming policy reforms relaxing restrictions on foreign investment in key sectors of the economy, including amendments on the Retail Trade Liberalization Act, the new Public Service Act, and Foreign Investments Act.

Economic Growth Engines

In the first quarter of 2021, Singapore ranked as the number one source of net foreign direct investment (BOP concept) for the Philippines, at USD 492.4-M, posting a 480.9% growth.

Bautista shared that the Philippine government is prioritizing investments into food production, food processing, advanced manufacturing, particularly those utilizing industry 4.0 technologies, infrastructure development including power and telecommunications, data centers or hyperscalers, healthcare, personal protective equipment (PPE) manufacturing, and pharmaceuticals, particularly those in vaccine co-manufacturing.

Anna Rellama, Director and Philippine Country Manager of advisory firm YCP Solidiance, also shared that consumer health, e-commerce, energy, construction, and infrastructure are potential areas of interest for foreign investors given their resilience during the pandemic.

To grow these critical industries, Philippine conglomerates forged and strengthened ties with foreign partners, including those in Singapore, pooling their capital and business know-how.

Ayala Corporation, the country’s oldest conglomerate, has strong ties with Singapore. Telco giant, Singtel Group, is a major shareholder in Ayala’s telecommunication unit, Globe, where it owns 20.07%  of total outstanding shares as of 30 June 2021. GIC, Singapore’s sovereign wealth fund, recently bought a 17.5% stake in AC Energy, Ayala’s renewables unit.

“While Globe and Singtel seem to be a match of technical capabilities and local market knowledge, AC Energy Corp. (ACEN) and GIC, I see, is really a match of ambition and values – ambitions on a regional scale and values on sustainable contributions in power generation,” said Jaime Alfonso Zobel de Ayala, Head of Business Development and Innovation at Ayala Corporation.

Beyond equity-based partnerships, Ayala is also working actively with startup enablers in Singapore to capture opportunities in emerging technologies.

Singapore Exchange (SGX)-listed Keppel Infrastructure Trust (KIT) partnered with Philippine Stock Exchange (PSE)-listed Metro Pacific Investments Corporation (MPIC) in 2020 to acquire Philippine Coastal Storage & Pipeline Corporation, the country’s largest independent petroleum products import storage facility located in Subic Bay. “We are looking for more partnerships with Singaporean companies. We are exploring areas, for example, at food security. We’ve ventured into logistics and recently also into Telemedicine. We’ve looked at rail opportunities in the past with Singaporean rail related companies. We are always open to business with Singaporean based enterprises, even with smaller companies, as long as their business has strong scalability potential,” said Karim Garcia, Vice President for Business Development at MPIC.

From the Singapore side, foreign investors looking to expand to the Philippines should take the time to shortlist local partners to streamline their market entry, recommended Rellama of YCP Solidiance.

Eric Leong of steel provider Mlion Corporation and Mervin Toh of tech firm OPSolutions shared their experience as Singapore small and medium enterprises (SMEs) doing business in the Philippines. Both echoed the importance of finding a local partner, which accelerated their growth.

Additionally, SMEs may look into affordable credit options, like trade finance, and work with corporates to reduce lending costs and defray risks, suggested Joel de Vera, Executive Director, Senior Trade Sales, Transaction Banking at Standard Chartered Bank Philippines.

Over 200 companies from Singapore and the region, across multiple sectors, such as manufacturing, wholesale trade, retail, and service sectors attended the “FYIstival: Expanding Trade and Investment Opportunities in the Philippines.” 

Date of Release: 18 August 2021

For the original release, please click here.

The Philippines: DTI Hong Kong unveils campaign to promote PH food products and ingredients

The Philippine Trade and Investment Center Hong Kong (PTIC-HK), in partnership with the Philippine Consulate General in Hong Kong SAR, PTIC – Beijing, PTIC – Guangzhou, PTIC – Shanghai, the Office of the Agriculture Counsellor of the Philippines in Beijing, Department of Trade and Industry -Export Marketing Bureau (DTI-EMB), DTI Baguio – Benguet, and the Center for International Trade Expositions and Missions (CITEM), officially launched the “Philippine Flavours” campaign to promote the Philippines as an attractive and reliable source of food products and ingredients for the Hong Kong and Mainland Chinese market on 5 August 2021.

The campaign is envisioned to kickstart a conversation around Filipino food and beverage products leading up to the country’s participation in the Hong Kong Trade Development Council’s Food Expo this month.

During the opening remarks, Atty. Raly L. Tejada, Consul General of the Philippine Consulate General in Hong Kong, emphasized the strong and enduring ties between the Philippines and Hong Kong, adding that Hong Kong is a great platform for Filipino food exporters to test the Mainland China market.

“The relationship between the Philippines and Hong Kong is very important not only because of their proximity but also because they see each other as important trading partners,” said Consul General Tejada.

In 2020, Hong Kong ranked as the country’s fourth trading partner, fourth largest export market, and 11th import supplier.

“For this campaign, we aim to promote Filipino products to Hong Kong, China, and even other parts of the world and provide a channel for Hong Kong’s general public to know more about the Filipino food and beverage,” he added.

The campaign kicked off with the launch of a cooking video between Carlo, a local chef from the Philippines and Martin, a popular online influencer in Hong Kong, where they cooked three Filipino-Hong Kong fusion dishes: beef brisket in clear broth, lychee sweet and sour pork, and pancit. 

After the video launch, an ensuing panel discussion explored the opportunities for Filipino food products and raw ingredients in Hong Kong. Moderated by Atty. Roberto B. Mabalot Jr, Vice Consul (Commercial) and Commercial Attache of PTIC-Hong Kong, the panelists included Mr. Billy Wong, Deputy Director of Research of the Hong Kong Trade and Development Council; Ms. Eva Marie C. Mariquina, Officer-in-Charge of Overseas Trade Fairs and Buyer Campaign Division, Center for International Trade Exposition and Missions; and Mr. John Carlo De Guzman, a businessman – chef from Baguio, Philippines.

“Being a strategic market for Philippine food products, we want to capitalize on our proximity to the market by bringing the best of Philippine flavours through products and ingredients. We want the market to experience unique Philippine flavors in their dishes. So the approach is fusion. We put in the market’s consciousness there are Philippine products which can add another layer of texture and flavor to their usual food,” Mariquina said.

In his closing remarks, Trade Secretary Ramon M. Lopez called on the 200,000-strong overseas Filipino (OFs) community in Hong Kong to champion Filipino food and beverages in their respective households.

“We look forward to our OFs in Hong Kong using more of our Filipino products when providing for the food and beverage requirements of your employers and their families. It is through this simple act of pride and patriotism that you are able to shine a light on Filipino food and beverage products, which indirectly contributes to our homeland’s economic development,” Secretary Lopez said in a video message.

“[P]hilippine food is a good representation of our country because, despite the diverse cultures throughout the islands, food also unites us—especially when we share it with others. We hope that we can share our food with you today,” Lopez concluded.

The Philippines will be participating in the Food Expo organized by the Hong Kong Trade Development Council from 12 – 16 August 2021, where it will promote Filipino food products that can be used as a substitute for ingredients in Hong Kong dishes. 

Date of Release: 11 August 2021

For the original release, please click here.