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NEWS UPDATES Asean Affairs    14 November 2012 

Foreign investments shrink in Philippines


Net inflow of foreign direct investments (FDI) fell in August as global economic problems dampened investor appetite for new businesses, the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (central bank or BSP) reported yesterday.

Net FDI inflow reached US$13 million in August, down nearly 83 per cent from $76 million in the same month last year. The amount was also 88 per cent lower than the $108 million in July.

The month-on-month drop indicated volatility in the sentiment of investors due to changing expectations over the ability of advanced economies to resolve their problems and lift the growth of the global economy, officials said.

“[The drop in net FDIs] reflected investors’ relatively cautious stance due to weak global economic prospects and financial strains in the advanced economies,” the BSP said in a statement.

The country’s performance in attracting investments in August brought the total net FDIs for the first eight months of the year to $1.04 billion, which was nonetheless up 61 per cent from $644 million in the same month last year.

Officials said the increase in the first eight months, which was due to favourable investment appetite in the months prior to August, was an indication that the outlook of foreign businesses on the Philippines remained positive. Such investment appetite, however, was being dampened by global economic problems, they said.

The sectors that benefited most from the FDIs in the first eight months were manufacturing, real estate, wholesale and retail trade, financial and insurance, and mining and quarrying.

The investments came mostly from the United States, Australia, Netherlands, United Kingdom, Japan and Bermuda.

The BSP said there was a likelihood for investments to increase soon, especially once the country gets an investment grade from any of the three major international credit-rating agencies.

All agencies—Moody’s Investors Service, Standard & Poor’s and Fitch Ratings—rate the Philippines one notch below investment grade.

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This year in Thailand-what next?

AseanAffairs   04 January 2011
By David Swartzentruber      

It is commonplace in journalism to write two types of articles at the transition point between the year that has passed and the New Year. As this writer qualifies as an “old hand” in observing Thailand with a track record dating back 14 years, it is time take a shot at what may unfold in Thailand in 2011.

The first issue that can’t be answered is the health of Thailand’s beloved King Bhumibol, who is now 83 years old. He is the world's longest reigning monarch, but elaborate birthday celebrations in December failed to mask concern over his health. More






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