The Philippine Embassy in Madrid promoted Philippine trade and investment opportunities before the members of the Parliament of Navarra, in cooperation with the Asociacíon de Amigos de Navarra y Filipinas (Association of Friends of Navarra and the Philippines / ANAFI) and the Spanish Chamber of Commerce in Manila.
The presentation was made in the context of the on-going deliberations on Navarra’s regular three-year Internationalization Plan, which sees the government of the autonomous community prioritizing specific countries for economic and investment outreach.
ANAFI President Javier Trigo and Vice-President Juanjo Rubio started the presentation by introducing their organization, which aims to foster bilateral cooperation between Navarra and the Philippines. Mr. Trigo mentioned the close cultural link between the Philippines and Navarra, noting how several towns and places in the Philippines bear Navarran names such as Barasoain and Pamplona. Mr. Rubio touched on the rapid growth of the Philippine economy, the increase in Navarra’s exports to the Philippines, and the possible opportunities for Navarran businesses in the country and Southeast Asia.
Ms. Bárbara Apraiz, Executive Director of the Spanish Chamber of Commerce in Manila, then discussed Philippine business culture and shared the positive experiences of Spanish enterprises that already have a presence in the country, which include major companies such as Acciona, Siemens Gamesa, and more.
The Embassy’s segment opened with new promotional videos from the Department of Tourism (“Wake Up in the Philippines”) subtitled in Spanish. Political-economic officer Mikhal de Dios then gave a presentation via teleconferencing that provided a brief overview of the Philippine’s strong economic performance over the past few years; highlighted priority sectors and potential areas of interest for Navarran investors and consultants; and noted the many historical links between Spain and the Philippines. The Embassy ended its presentation with an invitation for the Navarra lawmakers to visit the Philippines in the near future, when circumstances allow.
Navarra parliamentarians responded positively to the joint presentation and expressed their willingness to recommend the Philippines as a priority market to the Navarra Department of Economic Development. They added that they would like to know more about the Philippines in the future and consider more people-to-people projects, due to the long-standing historic ties between the Philippines and Spain.