Bank of China recently brought 95 client-companies to Cebu for an investors’ seminar that highlighted opportunities in the region, as well as the benefits of doing business in the Philippines.
The bank’s country head Deng Jun said these companies – 25 are from Hong Kong and the rest from mainland China – had no business interests in the Philippines. A third of them are engaged in financing, with the rest mostly in traditional industries such as infrastructure and manufacturing.
The seminar was held as part of the annual summit of finance ministers of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations. The 12th ASEAN Finance Ministers’ Investors Seminar discussed the latest developments in the region as well as its outlook.
Participation of the bank’s large client firms followed on the heels of a previous BOC – the world’s fourth largest bank – matchmaking exercise. In March, the bank brought in 320 small and medium-sized Chinese enterprises to meet with 350 Philippine SMEs as part of the BOC SME Cross-Border Trade and Investment Conference in Manila.
Meanwhile, the Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry is poised to receive a P3-billion credit facility from the BOC, earmarked to help more Filipino micro, small and medium enterprises get off the ground. Funding and implementation details are being ironed out.
Since the PCCI has no lending facility, the loans will likely be coursed through state-owned, Makati-based Small Business Corp.