MANILA, Philippines - Foreign direct investments in the Philippines stood at $7 million in May, falling 96% from the $195 million net inflows in the same month last year as investor sentiment remained subdued due mounting concerns over the euro zone's debt problems, the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas said.
However, the FDI inflows went up 10.2% to $844 million in the first five months of the year.
"The rise in FDI was driven mainly by equity capital, which yielded net inflows of $992 million," the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas said, in a statement.
Equity capital registered a net inflow of $48 million in May, down 27 percent from a year earlier. Net equity capital inflows of $992 million in the first five months of the year surged more than four-fold from last year.
The bulk of the investments in January to May originated from the United States, Australia, the Netherlands, and the United Kingdom.
The manufacturing, real estate, wholesale and retail trade, financial and insurance, benefited from higher investments.
Net foreign direct investment, portfolio inflows, and remittances from Filipinos working and living overseas help keep the country's balance of payments (BOP) in surplus.
The Philippines posted its first net portfolio outflow in four months in June, which brought net inflows in the first half of the year to $871 million, down 63 percent from last year. - With Reuters
The central bank expects a balance of payments surplus of $2.6 billion this year, slightly lower than an earlier forecast of $2.8 billion.