Meanwhile, there is no doubt that we incur very heavy importations of many
consumer products. One of the most heavily imported products is medicines,
and Trade and Industry Secretary Ramon Lopez hopes to have these
If Trade & Industry Secretary Ramon Lopez would have his way, the
Philippines may possibly not be such a heavy importer of too many consumer
products. The Trade Secretary is targeting multinational companies to make
the Philippines their production hub in the region. Secretary Lopez
announced this at the recent Manufacturing Summit 2017.
Secretary Lopez believes that there are brands or products that can be
manufactured here. Initial consultations have already been made with some
of these multinational companies. The government is wooing them to put up
plants here so that these products can be sourced locally by Filipinos.
Aside from this, this will generate more jobs and improve the country's
capability to produce products that we have been importing for several
For now, the Dept. of Trade & Industry is studying the possible
incentives, technical assistance and shares services. The Trade Secretary
is not partial to fiscal incentives of tariffs but would rather go for
research and development, equipment and shared services. Because of our
heavy dependence on imported medicines which are a big burden to our
citizens, the DTI hopes to start with the pharmaceuticals industry. The
Philippines imports a lot of medicines from India because these are much
cheaper there. If manufactured in the Philippines, these medicines will be
made more readily available for Filipinos at a much cheaper cost, according
to Sec. Lopez.
Making the Philippines as a production hub for many consumer products like
pharmaceuticals is indeed a good move on the part of the DTI. We hope this
will materialize soon.