FFE Magazine

Is PH an emerging power? Britain says yes

by FFE PH News staff

Newly appointed British ambassador to the Philippines Asif Ahmad revealed that Britain currently views the country as one of the ‘emerging powers.’

After presenting his credentials to President Aquino, the ambassador remarked ‘We have identified a number of countries and we have a special name for them: “emerging powers.”

‘[It] shows that you’re not just emerging as an economy but you can become powerful on a global stage.’


Ahmad with President Aquino.

Ahmad pointed out that while developed countries like Britain and America saw sluggish growth, the Philippines and other Asian economies were experiencing an upward trend. He said ‘The UK, Europe, and North America, we are the old economies that have led the world in innovation, creativity and growth for centuries. Suddenly the brakes are on our economy and we have to remodel our engagement.

‘It’s in Asia where the big engine of growth actually is, and the Philippines of course is now growing only second to China.’

The Philippines grew by 6.6% in 2012, registering a 6.8% growth in the fourth quarter of that year. In comparison, leading tiger economy China registered 7.8% growth in the same quarter while Vietnam saw 5.4% and Singapore 1.1% growth.

The ambassador said Britain was ready to increase its investments in the Philippines.

‘We are already fortunate that the UK is the largest investor in the Philippines from the European Union. We’re not complacent, we want to develop and build that.

‘I want to do something which hasn’t been done before, which is to generate high levels of investment from the Philippines into the UK.’

He revealed that he was already involved in talks with one Philippine company regarding a possible investment in Britain, but he has yet to disclose the name of the business. He merely said that the deal was as big as Thailand’s steel industry investment in the UK, what he dubbed ‘the single biggest investment in the UK from anywhere in the world.’

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