Just days ago, I had a drink with one Filippino friend. When we talking about different topics, one of them was about the relationship between Philippines and China. As we all know, some disputes about the island territory existed long time ago. Since Duterte became the new president of Philippines, he was always trying to make good relationship with China, and set aside the history island issues. The main cause is from business, instead of politics.
So business collaboration from each other is a globally trend, every good government has strong will to improve people life. The fundament way is how to provide enough jobs for people, how to increase their earning. Business is a key part, the politics issues will only results in internal turbulences.
As I have stayed in Philippines for a long time, and I want to talk about how Philippines economy can benefit from the friendship of China, and how Chinese companies can grow their overseas market not only in Philippines, but other similar countries.
The infrastructure is a big problem in Philippines, as I had read local newspaper, there is one officer said: If we want to attract global business to invest in Philippines, we should invest in our infrastructure first.
Let’s see some picture of the infrastructure in Philippines first:
Manila is the capital of Philippines, the most complaints about this city is about the traffic. In the downtown, the road is built in decades ago, which was very narrow not expanded with the fast growing vehicles.
The narrow street and growing traffic make huge headache for every citizen in Manila.
This is the high speed road from Manila to Batangas, only two ways in one direction. Way behind the developed high speed road system in China.
Philippines is an island country, so the railroad is very poor here. As Philippines develop its economy successfully these years, the delivery system is limiting the economy growth. So the Philippines government wish that China could help Philippines to build efficient railroad system here.
Taking flight to travel to different cities in Philippines is very common, because Philippines is an island country. As I had travelled to different cities by plane, the main flight hubs are Manila airport and Cebu airport. The old infrastructure and limit capacity hard to satisfy the growing needs of traveling especially for foreigners.
Manila International Airport
Subway is the benchmark to measure the development of one city. In Manila, the subway is old and small capacity. Only two lines here, and they hardly meet the requirement of people traveling.
The Challenge and Opportunity
I just numerated some challenges about infrastructure in Philippines. There are still more. However, Philippines is a friendly and beautiful country. The rich nature resources attract tourists worldwide. In recent, as Philippines and China solidifying friendship, more and more Chinese companies will be invest here. If the infrastructure improved, I think there will be potential opportunities for Philippines economy growth.
One Belt and One Road
As I have mentioned in the previous post “Some Thoughts on China One Belt One Road Strategy”, After successful economy growth for nearly 30 years, China has accumulated plentiful economy experience and capital to assist Philippines and other friend countries to develop their economy. In Han dynasty, Zhangjian build the silk road from Dunhuang to central Aisa, commercial trading benefited both China and the countries in silk road. In Ming Dynasty, Zhengqian built the maritime silk road from China to south Asia to Africa, brought China wealth to share with these countries. At Han and Ming Dynasty, China is the strongest country in the world. In May 14, 2017, Beijing will hold “One Belt One Road” conference, many country presidents will join, including Duterte, the Philippines president.
In my heart, I wish that China, Philippines and other friend countries will benefit each other economy and build long last friendship in this new era. For these Chinese companies, especially in the manufacture industry, that have the vision to explore the overseas market and keen on its product quality, I believe they will have a more bright future.