THE Duterte administration is looking for strengthened economic relations with Sweden, which recently reopened an embassy here, the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) said.
Over 70 delegates from 28 Swedish firms arrived in Manila to look for investments in the country, said Trade and Industry Undersecretary for Industry Promotion Group Nora Terrado.
Swedish Minister of Enterprise and Innovation Mikael Damberg led the delegation, which arrived in the Philippines to coincide with the reopening of the Embassy of Sweden in Manila after it had been closed in 2008.
“Swedish are known for their quality products and innovative solutions. We look forward in future partnerships with them and heightened trade relations that will generate more jobs for Filipinos,” Terrado added.
DTI, quoting Damberg, said that Sweden’s enhanced business relations with the Philippines is also seen in the recent expansion of IKEA, an international furniture chain store, in the country.
During the re-opening ceremonies of the Embassy of Sweden on November 8, Terrado stressed the importance of the embassy and Ambassador Harald Fries’ presence in Manila in furthering economic relations between Philippines and Sweden. She noted that at present, there are over 40 Swedish companies established in the Philippines.
In a message by Fries and Country Manager Carl Mamlmqvist, they mentioned that the reopening of the Embassy of Sweden in Manila is a strong signal of the Swedish government’s commitment to enhanced relations between Sweden and the Philippines. Sweden’s increased interest to the Philippines goes beyond trade and investment deals. Other areas of mutual interest include student exchange, disaster response and tourism.
According to the DTI, Sweden ranked as the Philippines’ 43rd trading partner (out of 223), 59th export market (out of 211), and 36th import supplier (out of 203) in 2015. Total bilateral trade amounted to US$143.40 million. (SDR/Sunnex)