I read about the January 26 webinar organized by the Italian Chamber of Commerce in the Philippines (ICCPI) and the Associazione Italia-Asean. Titled “Italy-Philippines: Discovering the Opportunities”, the online event disclosed that Italy intends to expand its businesses in the Asean region, specifically prioritizing the Philippines.
This bit of news made me happy as an Italian who has been living and doing business here in the country for the past twelve years. I am excited about the prospects for other Italians as I and my Filipino partner have successfully established Italpinas Development Corporation (IDC), an Italian-Filipino joint venture.
As living proof of a successful Italian-Filipino partnership, I believe we have something to offer to the new Italian organizations in terms of sharing our story and experiences. IDC was born out of the enthusiasm of the two founders — an Italian architect and a Filipino lawyer — and nurtured by their understanding of and deep respect for the country and its people, as well as the hard work of every member of the organization.
In my opinion, the Philippines is the best place for Italians to do business in Southeast Asia, for several reasons.
We have so many things in common — tradition, culture, religion, and so on. It will be very easy for Italians to adjust to Filipino culture. The country is business-friendly, which means processes are streamlined to make it easy for companies to do business. Aside from that, everybody speaks English here, contracts and regulations are all done in English, so that’s another plus.
As a developing country, there are indeed many opportunities here for foreign investors, specifically for the Italians. Philippine Board of Investments (BOI) Officer-in-Charge Director Lanie Dormiendo talked about the opportunities for Italian investors during the webinar I mentioned above.
There are opportunities in the garments and textiles business, she said. Infrastructure, aerospace, renewable energy, and machinery are just some of the other sectors that can present good opportunities for Italian entrepreneurs, according to Philippine Ambassador to Italy Domingo Nolasco. Personally, I believe there are wonderful opportunities in real estate, tourism, food and beverage, infrastructure, and power.
I daresay that I am one of the most active promoters of Philippine business and tourism in Italy. I have invited many of my friends to come and visit, and have in fact brought many Italians here to work in my company. Some of them stayed even if they did not plan to stay long in the beginning. They love the place as much as my Italian visitors who have enjoyed the local beaches and other tourist destinations.
Many of us ItalPinoys who have been working and living here for some time believe that it’s a good time to come and build a business here, just like what we did with IDC. The business environment is more dynamic compared to many places in Europe. It is really a good time to be in the Philippines.
About Architect Romolo Nati
Romolo Valentino Benedetto Nati known as Romolo Nati or RVN, is a multi-awarded Italian architect and businessman with interest in sustainable development (energy and real estate). He is the current Executive Chairman and CEO of Italpinas Development Corporation (IDC), an Italian-Filipino real estate development firm that specializes in the design and development of sustainable buildings. He is also the Vice Chairman of the Philippine renewable energy company Constellation Energy Corporation (CEC) that focuses in acquiring, financing and developing small to medium-scale renewable energy projects across the Philippines. Follow Architect Nati on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.