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Japan Applauds Philippines' Efforts to Enhance Economic Climate
Japan Applauds Philippines' Efforts to Enhance Economic Climate

Japan Applauds Philippines’ Efforts to Develop Investment and Business Environment

Japan applauded the Philippines’ continued efforts to enhance its business and investment climate.

Kazuhiko Koshikawa, the outgoing Japanese ambassador, expressed hope that this will persuade more Japanese companies to conduct business with the country during the Japan National Day reception in Taguig on Friday night.

He stated, “As for the private sector, Japan welcomes ongoing efforts to improve the investment and business environment of the Philippines. I am convinced that it will lead to a steady and substantial increase of foreign direct investment in this country with immense potential.”

Given all of its good intentions, Koshikawa previously bemoaned the fact that the Corporate Recovery and Tax Incentives for Enterprises (CREATE) Act of 2021 “has been cited as having made the business environment less competitive.”

He had issued a warning that “many companies, including that of the Japanese,” may withdraw their operations from the nation if the value-added tax (VAT)-related laws were not properly amended.

The Senate announced last month that it would discuss the suggested changes to the CREATE MORE bill, also known as “CREATE to Maximize Opportunities for Reinvigorating the Economy.”

The bill pushes for a more simplified tax refund system for registered business companies and the institutionalization of risk-based claim classification and audit framework to ameliorate the VAT refund process, increasing its timeliness, efficiency, and predictability.

During the same ceremony, Koshikawa reviewed the key accomplishments the two countries had made in the previous several years, focusing on infrastructure, peace in Mindanao, defense, and people-to-people ties.

According to him, ties between Japan and the Philippines have gotten stronger over time, going beyond their customary fields of collaboration.

Filipinos were among the top tourists in Japan in 2023, accounting for about 620,000 of the country’s incoming visits.

He noted “Last July, the number was the highest in ASEAN. People-to-people exchange is flourishing. We would like to keep our country attractive to the Filipino people.”

Through the leaders’ reciprocal visits, the Japan-Philippines relationship also saw a significant increase in 2023.

Koshikawa remarked that during President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr.’s visit to Japan in February 2023, initiatives for economic development led by his administration received complete support from both the public and commercial sectors in Japan.

The agreement to begin discussions for the Reciprocal Access Agreement (RAA), which would facilitate collaboration between the Japan Self-Defense Force and the Armed Forces of the Philippines, was another outcome of the November summit between President Marcos and Prime Minister Fumio Kishida.

Moreover, with the provision of coastal radar systems, Manila became the first recipient of the Official Security Assistance (OSA).

The two countries’ relations have also been fundamentally shaped by the Mindanao peace process, and Japan has reiterated its commitment to supporting the nation in “ensuring lasting peace and prosperity” in the region.

Regarding infrastructure, the envoy declared that Japan is totally committed to helping build the Davao Bypass, the North-South Commuter Railway, and the Metro Manila Subway.

Koshikawa cited, “The world is still in turmoil and uncertainty. That is why I look forward to Japan and the Philippines, who share heart-to-heart ties and fundamental values and principles, joining hands with like-minded countries to contribute to peace and prosperity in our region and in the world.”

Furthermore, he mentioned, “Under the strong leadership of both countries and your support, I hope cooperation between Japan and the Philippines will grow to even greater heights.”


  • Claire Feliciano

    Marie Claire Feliciano is a Senior Digital Copywriter at InCorp Philippines. Her expertise is to create SEO-driven content such as blogs, news articles, and infographics.

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