By Mohammed Waseem
Philippines is among the developing nations that are developing rapidly. It was recently industrialized and investment opportunities have increased. The economy has opened up a little and investment options have emerged. From an agriculture-based economy, Philippines has turned into a service-based economy with over 50% of the industry being service-focused.
Philippines is the 43rd largest economy with 12th largest population. The country has many large companies operating to take advantage of low wages and highly qualified workforce. Foreign investors are welcomed by the country to make investments in various ways.
Experts suggest that investment in real estate and the stock are the best options available for foreigners looking to invest in the Philippines. The best ways to invest in the stock are through American Depository Receipts (ADR) and Exchange Traded Funds (ETF). Almost all international investors consider American Depository Receipts for investment. They are meant to make it easy for investors to invest, without having to go through all the formalities of money transfer, exchange, stock analysis and so on.
ADRs enable investors to invest while not owning the stock. It means that the stock is owned by a depository bank on behalf of the investor. Philippines is one of the 70 countries, in which, ADRs are available for investment. They can be bought and sold just like ordinary shares. In addition, no foreign brokerage account would be needed.
The Exchange Traded Funds can be purchased on US Stock Exchanges as well. ETF is an index-based stock, whose performance is based on its correlating index. Its purpose is not to compete with the other index but copy it; which means, that the goal of an ETF is to yield the same return on investment as the correlating index. Other than these, investors can directly purchase stock on the Philippines Stock Exchange using a foreign depository account.
Investment in real estate is another big opportunity. Manila is considered the top real estate market in Asia, according to a report by CBN News. The Government of Philippines also encourages foreign investors to invest in the manufacturing, information technology, outsourcing, tourism and agribusiness industries.
Citizens of a number of countries are also allowed to visit the Philippines without the need for any visa, for tourism and business purposes, which makes it easier for investors to visit the country. The list of countries can be accessed here. However, the period of visit cannot exceed 30 days.