The British Chamber of Commerce Philippines (BCCP) formally unveiled its new office on June 18 at the W Fifth Avenue Building in Bonifacio Global City, Taguig. UK Trade Envoy to the Philippines, George Freeman MP, and Her Majesty’s Ambassador Asif Ahmad led the ceremonial opening which was also attended by the BCCP Board, members, staff, and invited guests. The presence of Mr. Freeman at the event also marked a momentous day for Philippine-UK trade relations, as the Philippines is considered by the UK as a “major trading partner”, and a strategic gateway for British companies wishing to expand their operations into Southeast Asia. The BCCP is proud to be working with the British Government in ensuring that this gateway continues to remain open and ready for business.
BCCP Chairman Roger Lamb started the proceedings with an introductory speech highlighting the historic importance of the Chamber’s first independent offices in the Philippines, and the ambitions that it has in establishing a British Business Centre. Ambassador Ahmad proceeded by affirming his confidence regarding the future of the BCCP, and his vision for the continued relationship between the British Embassy, UKTI and the British Chamber of Commerce. Ambassador Ahmad and George Freeman MP, share the notion that the Philippines is a strategic location for British companies to initiate business in the soon-to-be-integrated ASEAN region, because of the Philippines’ western-oriented culture, predominant English-speaking population, and rapid economic growth—factors that will attract more UK investors to the archipelagic state.
George Freeman MP, has been specifically assigned to the Philippines as the UK Government’s official Trade Envoy. During his first visit to the country, he was accompanied by five British energy companies seeking investment opportunities and partnerships with local organisation. He relayed the UK’s plans of positioning itself as a strong trading partner, particularly to the emerging countries such as the Philippines. He recognised the importance of the presence of the British Chamber of Commerce in the Philippines, as a key partner along with UKTI and the British Embassy, in supporting the needs of British businesses and helping them to explore the Philippine market. After their respective keynote addresses, Freeman, Lamb, and Ahmad performed the traditional ribbon-cutting to officially open the new office of the BCCP.