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PH and Israel have signed an investment promotion and protection agreement.

MANILA, Philippines — By signing the Investment Promotion and Protection Agreement, the Philippines and Israel have pledged to strengthen bilateral economic connections (IPPA).

The IPPA was signed on June 7 in Jerusalem by Secretary Ramon Lopez and Israel Finance Minister Avigdor Lieberman, according to the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI).

The IPPA covers national treatment, most favored nation treatment, free transfers, rules-based expropriation and compensation, and investor-state dispute settlement, according to the two countries.

Agro-tech, life sciences and healthcare, water technologies, high-technology and semiconductors, cybersecurity, financial technology, military sector, smart transportation, clean technology, smart manufacturing, and the diamond industry are among the industries highlighted under the IPPA.

The IPPA, according to Lopez, intends to encourage more Israeli companies to investigate investment prospects in the Philippines.

“The Philippines is interested in Israel’s innovation expertise, particularly in innovative and smart technologies that will result in more competitive and efficient products,” says the statement. Israeli investors, on the other hand, have expressed interest in investing in the Philippines’ infrastructure, agricultural and water, and business process outsourcing (BPO) sectors,” he noted.

Aside from the IPPA, the Philippines and Israel have also established a Joint Economic Commission (JEC) and a collaboration arrangement with the Israel Innovation Authority.

Lopez is in Israel this week to reinforce trade and economic relations between the two nations, despite the fact that the Israeli government will change by the end of the month, and to invite Israeli companies to invest in the country.

“Israeli investors can surely look forward to reaping the benefits from game-changing legislative revisions like the liberalization of the public services act, the retail trade liberalization law, and the foreign investments act, and now is the most appropriate time to do so,” he said.

Israel is the Philippines’ 34th largest commercial partner, with the 39th largest export market and the 31st largest import source.

The outgoing DTI secretary has spent the last six years working to strengthen the country’s trade and investment partnerships, particularly with non-traditional markets.

Lopez will sign the IPPA with the United Arab Emirates this week, in addition to Israel.

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