RP Attracts Textile Investors from Taiwan, China, Korea; after Signing of JPEPA Which Eliminated Tariffs
Byline: BERNIE CAHILES-MAGKILAT
The Philippines is attracting garment and textile investors from Taiwan, China and Korea following the signing of the Japan-Philippines Economic Partnership Agreement (JPEPA), in which both countries agreed to eliminate immediately tariffs on almost all textiles and apparels.
This was revealed by Garments and Textile Export Board (GTEB) executive director Serafin Juliano. He, however, refused to prematurely identify these firms.
The JPEPA signed by Japan Minister Junichiro Koizumi and President Gloria Arroyo during the ASEAN Three (Japan, Korea, China) Leaders Summit in Vientiane, Laos in November last year has identified industries including garments and textile for tariff elimination over a 10year period.
This means duty-free exports for Philippine-made products to Japan and vice-versa.
In 2003, Japan exported to the Philippines $9.47 billion worth of goods mainly machinery and electronics parts.
On the other hand, Philippines exports to Japan totaled $7.41 billion, led by bananas, mangoes and other fruits and farm products.
Meantime, Julinao reported that two weeks after the abolition of the quota system, the domestic garment industry indicated it is off to a good start with increased orders both in garments and textiles.
"The feedback is encouraging," Juliano said after meeting with different garment and textile exporters.
According to Juliano, the industry, which has been prepared well in advance for the quota lifting, indicated it has adjusted to the quota-less regime.
The strategy, Juliano said is to reduce dependence on China because of the existing safeguards imposed on some garment categories and textile.
As a result, the domestic industry that also vowed to continue improving and sustain multi-level platform focusing on value-driven products. …