MANILA, Philippines – American multinational conglomerate 3M is bullish on its prospects in the Philippines under the new administration and aims to continue pouring in more investments in the areas of manufacturing and research and development (R&D).
“We’re very positive as to where the country is headed in the future. It’s just a great time to be in the Philippines. There are a number of reasons why we like the Philippines, (and why we plan) to continue to do business, continue to invest, and continue to expand,” 3M executive vice president for international operations Hak Cheol Shin said at the opening of the 3M Philippines’ Global Service Center (GSC) in Bonifacio Global City yesterday.
The country’s growing middle class and its stable economy and government were among the factors Shin cited as driving 3M’s optimism in the Philippines.
“The stability of the government has been quite good, and we see even better conditions coming specially with the new president. Stability is important so we can predict what’s going to happen in the next month or next year,” he said.
“The other thing we like in the last few years is the amount of investments in infrastructure because infrastructure is critical. Everytime I come here there is actual development from roads, highways, and new cities,” Shin added.
Reflecting 3M’s strong confidence in the Philippines is its newly opened GSC in Bonifacio Global City, one of the firm’s only three shared service hubs worldwide.
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Shin said the Philippines GSC is bigger than that in Wroclaw, Poland which opened last year. 3M’s GSC in San Jose, Costa Rica, which opened early this year, is the largest.
The Philippines GSC will be responsible for critical processes in finance, sourcing and procurement, and human resources, and will also provide IT support for quality, reporting, analytics, security and database management.
“The Philippines is a strategic location. 3M Philippines has a great business here as we have been in operations for 52 years. Workforce quality and English capability here is second to none. And the country is getting better in terms of stability and infrastructure. That’s the reason 3M chose the Philippines as a location,” Shin said.
By October, 3M is also set to open a Customer Technical Center which according to Shin will involve a lot of investment in an R&D perspective.
For its manufacturing operations locally, the company is not closing doors for a potential expansion but Shin declined to identify specific plans at the moment. The company operates a manufacturing facility in Carmona, Cavite.
“Our manufacturing decision comes from the business. As local business continues to grow, then the Philippines will pull forward some investment. And from what I can see I have no reason to turn it down,” he said.
3M produces more than 55,000 products worldwide, ranging from household products, adhesives, abrasives, non-wovens, fire protection, dental and orthodontic products, electronic materials, medical, and car care products.
Its brands include Scotch-Brite, Post-it, and Command.