WASHINGTON, D.C. - Chicago businessmen should invest in the Philippines, which is no longer seen as a "dark horse" in Asia, Philippine Ambasador Jose L. Cuisia said.
“With all the good news coming out of the Philippines lately, the country is no longer a dark horse as it is now making a competitive run,” said Cuisia, Jr. during a recent talk with members of the Chicago Council on Global Affairs.
"Investors trying to avoid some of the risks in Asia are beginning to find out that the biggest risk is not being in the Philippines,” he added in his keynote speech before more than 120 members of the council.
He highlighted the bustling trade between the Philippines and the United States, which is Manila's third largest trading partner.
Chicago is also part of the itinerary of the members of the 2nd Investment Roadshow headed by economist Dr. Bernardo Villegas.
Goldman Sachs vice-chairman Carl Stern, who introduced Cuisia, said "the sense of progress is palpable in the Philippines."
Consul General Leo Herrera-Lim said Chicago and the rest of Illinois is home to the third highest concentration of Filipinos among in the United States, as well a number of Fortune 500 companies.
Herrera-Lim said it was the first time in many years that the council invited a Filipino diplomat.
Cuisia and members of the business delegation who included Benjamin Philip Romualdez, president of the Chamber of Mines of the Philippines and Isidro Consunji, president of DMCI Holdings, also took part in an investment seminar that included American and Filipino business owners and corporate executives from the Chicago area.
Other members of the delegation who were present were Roberto Dispo, president of First Metro Investment Corporation; Rainerio Borja, president of EGS Philippines; and Jesus Zulueta, chairman of ZMG Ward Howell.
During the seminar, Villegas discussed the macroeconomic developments in the Philippines and the future of the ASEAN Economic Community.
The rest of the delegation made individual presentations that focused on business opportunities for investors in key sectors such as infrastructure and real estate, mining, financial services, business process and lnowledge process outsourcing, and human resources.