Cargill in PH 'for the long run,' downplays uncertainties over incentives

Cathy Yang, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Nov 28 2018 08:30 PM

Cargill will invest another P12.5 billion in the Philippines over the next 2 years. Handout

MANILA – Cargill’s presence in the country was “for the long run” as it announced another P12.5 billion investment for the next 2 years, downplaying concerns on the government's plan of rationalizing incentives. 

Cargill still chose to invest in the country because of its legal system, culture, economic growth and its growing population, its chairman and CEO David MacLennan said in an exclusive interview for ANC’s The Boss. 

“We make food, we want to be where people are hungry, where they want to improve their diets, where we can work with local farmers,” MacLennan said.

MacLennan said businesses should not anchor investments on incentives.

“We don’t build a business plan around what government policies will or won’t be, because if it gets too restrictive, you have to make tough decisions,” MacLennan said. 

“If you build it around government incentive and it’s a short-term strategy then ultimately, I don’t think that would be successful. If you do not like uncertainty in today’s world, you will never be successful," he added.

Competitiveness, MacLennan said, is measured based on people, commitment to safety of the people and food safety, and long-term business plans. 

He said the P12.5 billion investment would be divided to Cargill’s interests such as its feeds and copra business, and its partnership with Jollibee Food Corp, C-Joy. 

Part of the investment will go to its premix solutions plant in Bulacan that helps farmers increase productivity by allowing them to adjust rations and ingredients for their livestock feeds.

"It allows them to get more flexibility to get better results and that’s part of our purpose to make farmers be more productive and to increase their livelihoods," MacLennan said. 

Cargill sees a "more dramatic growth" with the investment that is almost equivalent to the investment in the Philippines in the last 70 years, MacLennan said.