Macquarie, GIC investments of P65-B is vote of confidence in Duterte admin

Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez III said the move by Macquarie Infrastructure Management (Asia) Pty Ltd and Arran Investments to pump P65 billion into the Philippine energy sector is a vote of trust and confidence by foreign investors in the Duterte administration and its socioeconomic reform agenda anchored on high and inclusive growth.

A consortium of investors comprising funds managed by Macquarie Infrastructure Management and Arran Investments have formed the Philippines Renewable Energy Holdings Corp (PREHC) and offered to acquire up to 31.7 percent of Energy Development Corp. (EDC), a renewable power producer, for $1.3 billion or about P65 billion.

Macquarie Infrastructure Management is a member of Macquarie Infrastructure and Real Assets (MIRA), one of the world's largest infrastructure asset managers. Arran, meanwhile, is an affiliate of the GIC Pte Ltd., which manages Singapore's Sovereign Wealth Fund.

The consortium is planning to buy 6.6 billion to 8.9 billion common shares of EDC, mostly from minority shareholders, at P7.25 per share, or a maximum total price of P64.525 billion ($1.28 billion), said First Gen Corp., the mother company of EDC, in a report to the Philippine Stock Exchange.

Dominguez said that along with the additional P45 billion investment in the local cigarette industry from Japan Tobacco International (JTI), following its acquisition of Mighty Corp., the total foreign direct investment from these two sectors alone will amount to P110 billion.

The credit goes to President Duterte who inspires trust and confidence in the Philippines, Dominguez said.

JTI, which is partly owned by the Japanese government, has sealed the deal to acquire cigarette manufacturer Mighty Corp. for P45 billion, of which P25 billion will be paid to the government to settle Mighty's tax liabilities.

The value-added tax on the JTI-Mighty deal will bring in an additional P5 billion for the government, Dominguez said. This means the total tax haul for the Bureau of Internal Revenue will amount to P30 billion.

Mighty, through, JTI, already remitted to the BIR P3.44 billion last July 20, representing the initial tranche of its tax settlement. The remainder of the settlement sum will be paid to the government upon the approval by the Philippine Competition Commission of JTI's acquisition of Mighty.

Source: Department of Finance

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