Energy and agriculture are some of the areas of potential investment for Australian firms in the Philippines.

In a press briefing Monday, Australian Embassy deputy head of mission for the Philippines Moya Collett said the 10 priority sectors enumerated in their Invested:Australia's Southeast Asia Economic Strategy to 2040 has strong relevance in the Philippines.

'As you know, there's a lot of potential to do more agriculture and resources. Australia is focused on the green energy transition. So you would hope to see more investments in that area as well,' Collett said.

Among the priority sectors mentioned in the strategy are agriculture and food, resources, green energy transition, infrastructure, education and skills, visitor economy, healthcare, digital economy, professional and financial services, and creative industries.

Asked if the Philippines and Australian have the potential to partner in the area of clean energy, Collett expressed optimism.

'Yes, I hope so because Australia wants to be a clean energy superpower. We really want to export our clean energy to the world and invest more in green energy in the region and the Philippines absolutely should be part of what we're doing,' Collett said.

She mentioned that the Philippines opening up the renewable energy sector for foreign investment, is a key factor that makes it attractive for investors.

In a bid to attract more investments in renewable energy, the Department of Energy issued a circular, allowing 100 percent foreign equity in renewables.

Collett said Australia's Southeast Asia strategy hopes to bring in targeted investment in priority sectors.

The strategy outlines four categories of required actions to realize the commercial potential between Australia and Southeast Asia namely raising awareness, removing blockages, building capacity and deepening investments.

The Australian government noted that Southeast Asia and Australia share bright economic growth prospects, geographical proximity, economic complementary, and a need for trade diversification.

It stressed that Southeast Asia's favorable demographic, industrialization and urbanization trends and technological advances will increasingly make it an economic powerhouse to 2040 and beyond.

'There is much more Australia and Southeast Asia can, and should, be doing to boost this important economic relationship. Australia has much to offer as a trusted and reliable partner as Southeast Asian economies continue to grow,' the Australian Embassy said.

Latest data from the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) showed that Australia ranked as the country's 12th top trading partner in June with total trade amounting to $442.60 million.


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