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PH and Japan sign an Industrial Cooperation Action Plan

Following discussions between President Benigno S. Auino III and Japan Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on strengthened industrial cooperation during the President’s State Visit last month, Philippine Undersecretary for Industry Development Adrian S. Cristobal Jr. and Japan Deputy Director-General for Trade Policy Toshiyuki Sakamoto signed an Action Plan on Industrial Cooperation on 16 July 2015 at the Board of Investments, Makati City.

Last July 2014, DTI Secretary Gregory L. Domingo and then Minister of Economy, Trade and Industry Toshimitsu Motegi signed a Joint Statement on Industrial Cooperation where Japan expressed support to Philippine efforts in developing an Industrial Development Roadmap and elevating the country into ASEAN’s manufacturing and human resources development (HRD) hub. This Statement set forth further collaboration and the development of an Action Plan to realize these objectives.

“The government’s role is to pave the way towards industrial competitiveness by creating a business environment conducive for business to flourish. Building on partnerships and fostering closer cooperation with other governments and the private sector will also be crucial in attaining this,” Secretary of Trade and Industry Gregory L. Domingo said.

Japan continues to be a top investor in the country and has been actively involved in the DTI’s participative policy making processes through various mechanisms such as formal and informal industry consultations, the Industrial Cooperation Dialogue and discussions under the Philippines-Japan Economic Partnership Agreement (PJEPA) Sub-Committee on Improvement of the Business Environment. Japan contributes, as well, to the implementation of the ASEAN Strategic Action Plan for SME Development which intends to mainstream SMEs into ASEAN trade.

“The Philippines and Japan have a longstanding partnership in fostering economic development in the country. Japan contributes to our efforts in sustaining our socioeconomic growth as it continues to be a rich source of knowledge and experience in industry development and SME-centered policies and initiatives. These will help us initiatives in identifying gaps and designing measures that are in-line with our APEC Boracay Action Agenda to Globalize MSMEs,” Trade and Industry Undersecretary Adrian Cristobal Jr added.

The Action Plan outlines broad initiatives in key areas of interest and cooperation including automobile, manufacturing, micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs), services and human resource development (HRD). These initiatives are geared towards identifying and addressing supply chain gaps between the Philippines and Japan by providing technical and institutional capacity building to domestic industry players.

The signing of the Action Plan was preceded by the first stakeholder consultation which aims to identify specific programs that could be undertaken by the Philippine and Japanese governments to implement the Action Plan. This was attended by representatives from the private sector, business support organizations, Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO) and the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA)

Posted By: Edrillan Pasion

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