MANILA — President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. on Monday announced that a “high-level business delegation formed by US President Joe Biden” would travel to the Philippines next year to consider potential investments in the country.
The visit of the high-level US presidential trade and investment mission is expected to take place in March 2024, Marcos Jr. said during his arrival speech after his 6-day visit to the United States.
“Upon the request of the Philippines is to explore different opportunities for investment and for operations here in the Philippines, especially in the targeted sectors that we have been speaking about,” he said.
“This is a new feature as there has never been a presidential delegation to any country before, and that is again because of our continuing strong partnership with the United States,” he added.
The commitment from Washington comes after Marcos traveled to 3 American states in the past week to participate in the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Leaders’ Summit, court investors from Silicon Valley, and to visit an outpost in Hawaii.
Investment pledges from Marcos Jr.’s recent US trip is pegged at $670 million, Malacañang earlier said.
KEY AGREEMENTS SIGNED
Among the deals signed were the “123 Agreement”, which would allow the Philippines and the US to launch joint programs on the peaceful use of nuclear energy.
“This paves the way for potential nuclear power projects with American providers as well as for streamlining licensing requirements for the private sector with respect to investments on nuclear-related and tangible transfers of technology while ensuring the highest standards of safety, security and safeguards,” the Chief Executive said.
“This will bring us closer to a more energy-secure and green Philippines,” he said.
“We must commend both teams from the Philippines and the United States because it is my understanding that this 123 Agreement that the US has signed in the Philippines was done in the fastest time that a 123 Agreement has ever been done,” he added.
The Philippines also signed a supply chain agreement that serves as an “important mechanism to improve supply chain transparency” in the country.
The new deal would also “enable sustainable industry development with respect to critical sectors and critical goods,” Marcos said.
“It would also enhance the promotion of labor rights [as] the agreement provides a framework for sustainable investments and technologies and knowledge transfers from partners,” he said.
The Philippines will be hosting the 2024 Indo-Pacific Business forum to cater to companies who are “looking to enter the Philippine market as well as to expand those that have an existing presence and operations in our country,” the President said.