Philippines' Marcos touts $19.7b investment pledges from 'fruitful' trip to Indonesia, Singapore

Mr Marcos also invited private capital to upgrade and expand roads, airports and seaports in the Philippines. PHOTO: EPA-EFE

MANILA - President Ferdinand Marcos Jr has touted his first overseas trip as a success that has secured investment pledges worth at least US$14 billion (S$19.7 billion, as he eyes economic gains to get his presidency off to a strong start.

During visits this week to Indonesia and Singapore, Mr Marcos met leaders of government and commerce, and declared the Philippines open for business.

He invited private capital to upgrade and expand roads, airports and seaports in the Philippines, home to some 110 million people.

Mr Marcos, 64, who travelled with top officials of his economic team, said he received investment pledges in renewable energy, data centres, e-commerce, broadband technology, government housing and agriculture.

"This will support our country's economic recovery efforts and create more jobs for Filipinos here in our country," he said on his return late Thursday. "We look forward to doing the detailed work that is necessary to bring all these proposals to fruition."

Mr Marcos' late father was overthrown in a 1986 uprising that ended a tumultuous two-decade rule that the Philippines' new leader has described as a "golden era" he intends to replicate.

Mr Marcos wants to improve agriculture to reduce reliance on food imports and to expand the economy by as much as 8 per cent during his six-year term and halve the poverty rate, which stood at 18.1 per cent in 2021. REUTERS

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