Long term inflows to PH declined April as foreign firms slash lending to local units

July 10, 2024
4:58PM PHT

Foreigners lent significantly less funds to long term local borrowers in April, while they also invested slightly lower amounts into their Philippine operations during the same period, according to the latest data from the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas.

In a statement on Wednesday, the central bank said foreign direct investment (FDI) into the country recorded net inflows of $556 million in April 2024, marking a 36.9% decrease from the $881 million reported in April 2023.

Net foreign investments in debt instruments fell by 38.8% to $407 million from $665 million in April 2023.

Additionally, net investments in equity capital (excluding reinvestment of earnings) decreased by 48.1% to $68 million, and reinvestment of earnings saw a 4.2% drop to $81 million.

Despite the monthly decline, the year-to-date FDI levels from January to April 2024 increased by 18.7% to $3.5 billion, compared to $3 billion in the same period last year.

The bulk of what the central bank classifies as "foreign direct investment" into the Philippines at any given period is actually money lent by foreign funders to related Philippine concerns like private companies (in yellow) in the form of long-term bonds. (Graph from BSP).

This growth reflects continued investor confidence in the Philippine economy amid global uncertainties, the central bank said.

Equity capital placements in April primarily came from Japan, the United States, Malaysia, and Singapore, and were channeled into manufacturing, real estate, wholesale and retail trade, and financial and insurance industries.

The BSP stressed that its FDI statistics are based on actual investment inflows, distinguishing them from the Philippine Statistics Authority's data on approved foreign investments, which represent commitments that may not be fully realized.

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