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The Philippines Named as the 'Best Country to Invest In'

by: Sidney Liquigan

Thursday, March 22, 2018 |

In its 2018 Best Countries report, U.S. News & World Report, in partnership with Y&R's BAV Group and The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, named the Philippines as the number one in the list of the Best Countries to Invest In out of 80 countries. Also included in the top 10 are Indonesia, Poland, Malaysia, Singapore, Australia, Spain, Thailand, India, and Oman.

According to U.S. News, the countries were ranked based on the report by World Bank Group, which identified the distinct factors – natural resources, markets, efficiency, and strategic assets – that motivate an individual or corporation to invest in a country. In addition, U.S. News also focused on the following attributes to qualify the countries as worthy of investment: entrepreneurship, economic stability, favorable tax environment, innovation, skilled labor, technological expertise, dynamism, and corruption. The ranking was determined from the survey responses of more than 6,000 respondents who are global decision-makers.

"In contrast to declining inflows of foreign direct investment, or FDI, to Southeast Asia as a whole, the Philippines continued to perform well, according to United Nations data. In years to come, the country is expected to receive more FDI from within the region from powerhouses like China that are looking to utilize available labor in developing nations," the publisher said in an online report.

As of November 2017, the Philippines' FDI inflow was at $8.725 billion, surpassing Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas' forecast of $8 billion for the entire 2017.

In a comment to Interaksyon, Finance Secretary Carlos G. Dominguez III attributed the Philippines' position in the top spot to the country's young and hardworking workforce and an excellent inclusive growth momentum, in addition to the expanding middle class, a politically stable environment, a stable monetary policy, an achievable infrastructure program, and a strong drive against corruption.

Dominguez also pointed that despite slower GDP growth in 2017 at 6.7% (compared to 6.9% in 2016), the Philippine economy remains one of the fastest-growing in Asia.

In U.S. News' overall Best Countries list, the Philippines is at the 49th spot, while Switzerland ranked as the best country, followed by Canada, Germany, the UK, and Japan.

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