Qatar will invest at least $1bn in the Philippines, said Peter Favila, Philippine Secretary of Trade and Industry, who accompanied Philippine President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo during her three-day visit here.
Favila also disclosed that the Emir H H Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani plans to visit the Philippines. According to Favila, the Emir accepted President Arroyo’s invitation during their meeting.
“The Philippines can expect at least $1bn investment from Qatar in the coming years, Qatar Telecom (Qtel) Chairman Sheikh Abdullah bin Mohammed bin Saud Al Thani told Ramon Ang, president of San Miguel Corp (SMC), during the QTEL-SMC agreement signing ceremony,” said Favila, in an interview with The Peninsula at the Doha Sheraton Hotel yesterday.
“Qtel will be investing $250m in 2008. This will lead, presumably, to a $1bn investment not only in telecommunications but also in other industries,” he said.
Favila said that the Emir mentioned during a luncheon hosted by him that Qatar is interested to invest in Philippines’ agriculture and fisheries sector.
“The Emir expressed great admiration for Filipino workers and mentioned how they have contributed to the growth of Qatar. He told President Arroyo that Qatar would need additional workerforce for future projects, like building more hospitals,” said Favila.
Prior to the luncheon, the Emir and Arroyo witnessed the signing of two protocols: the Commercial protocol or economic tactical agreement signed by H E Sheikh Fahd bin Jassim bin Mohamed Al Abdurrahman Al Thani, Minister of Business and Trade, and Favila; and the Avoidance of the Double Taxation and the Prevention of Fiscal Evasion with Respect to Income Taxes protocol signed by H E Yousuf Hussein Kamal, Minister of Economy and Finance and Philippines Finance Secretary Margarito Teves.