Around 20 representatives of German companies which have interests in the bio-energy sector attended the seminar “Bioenergy in the Philippines” in Frankfurt am Main on 26 February 2016. The program gave an introduction on the Philippines’ use of bioenergy as a renewable energy source, underlying conditions and market opportunities in the country, current practices and challenges, and prospects for financing and other business undertakings. It was also an opportunity for initial networking to pave the way for a bioenergy business mission to the Philippines on 11-15 April 2016.
The German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy (BMWi), in cooperation with the German-Philippines Chamber of Commerce and Industry (GPCCI) and Eclareon GmBH , a business consultancy focusing on renewable energy, organized the seminar. Eclareon has been in consultation with the Philippine Embassy since May 2015 on the conduct of this seminar and a prospective business mission to the country.
Organized under the BMWi’s Renewables Made in Germany program, various subject matters were tackled by several speakers, including Ms. Ruby De Guzman, Head of the Biomass Energy Management Division at the Department of Energy, who spoke on “Opportunities and Challenges of Bioenergy in the Philippines,” and Engr. Andres M. Tuates Jr. of the Philippine Center for Postharvest Development and Mechanization (PHilMech), under the Department of Agriculture, who gave a presentation on the “Status and Utilization of Bioenergy in the Philippines.”
Mr. Tobias Petersen, Project Manager for Trade Promotion at GPCCI, gave an overview of conditions in the Philippines. He highlighted the country’s advantages, such as a large and young population, the wide use of English and good level of education, the rarity of labor strikes, an efficient cost structure, good location within ASEAN and Asian region, excellent infrastructure and incentives in special economic zones, and the country’s GSP+ status, under which it can export a wide array of products to the European Union at zero tariff.
Philippine Ambassador Melita Sta. Maria-Thomeczek, in her welcome remarks, invited German companies to take advantage of the opportunities presented by Germany’s Energy Transition, or Energiewende, to bring technology solutions to the Philippines in the area of renewable energies.
“During its 70th anniversary, the United Nations adopted a plan of action for ‘People, Planet, and Prosperity,’ or the so-called global Sustainable Development Goals,” she noted. “The 7th of the 17th goals adopted commits the members of the UN to ensuring access to affordable, reliable, sustainable, and modern energy for all. The Philippines is committed to do its part to make this a reality.”
Eclareon GmbH will now coordinate the business mission to the Philippines in April. German companies and prospective Philippine partners will find more information (in German) about the mission at http://www.export-erneuerbare.de/.# – END