On Wednesday 25 October 2023, the Luxembourg Stock Exchange (LuxSE) hosted Benjamin Diokno, Minister of Finance of the Philippines and his delegation as part of a financial mission to Luxembourg.
Along with representatives of the Luxembourg Ministry of Finance, Luxembourg for Finance, the Luxembourg Chambre of Commerce and the Luxembourg Investment Fund Association, LuxSE gave an in-depth presentation of the Luxembourg financial centre, highlighted the unique strengths of the Luxembourg financial centre and potential areas of cooperation with the Philippines.
In 2022, the Philippines reportedly achieved its strongest economic growth in over four decades. According to forecasts by the World Bank, this year, the Philippines is set to become the fastest-growing country among the ten nations that make up the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN). The country has placed a strategic focus on developing major infrastructure projects, a green economy programme and public-private partnerships to increase foreign direct investments.
“From clean energy to cutting-edge technology, the Philippines is primed and ready to seize emerging opportunities with our partners from around the world,” commented Minister Diokno.
Alain Kinsch, Consul General of the Philippines to Luxembourg and President of the Luxembourg Stock Exchange has been working to create closer ties between the two countries: “The Luxembourg financial centre has a lot to offer to both Philippine and Luxembourg market participants. The Philippines has seen strong economic growth in recent years and is open to international cooperation.” He added: “I am impressed by the level of ambition, innovation and speed with which the Philippine Government is delivering on its infrastructure plan with 197 projects worth $155 billion of which 39 will be undertaken through public-private partnerships. This is a great opportunity also for international investors to access sectors such as for example, renewable energy, airports or telecommunications in the Philippines.”
The relationship between LuxSE and the Philippines dates back to 1992 when the Republic of the Philippines listed its first international bond at the exchange. Today, the sovereign issuer has 36 outstanding bonds listed at LuxSE, through which it has raised the equivalent of €40 billion.
In 2022, the Philippines introduced its Sustainable Finance Framework, offering guidance on green, social, and sustainability bonds, loans, and other debt instruments. This framework adheres to ICMA's principles, ASEAN sustainability bond standards, and the Loan Market Association's green loan principles. Later in the year, the country issued its inaugural USD 500 million sustainability bond, which was listed on LuxSE and featured on the world's leading sustainable finance platform, the Luxembourg Green Exchange (LGX). Subsequently, the Philippines has launched two more sustainability bonds on LuxSE and LGX, and earlier this month, it published its initial sustainability bond allocation and impact report.
“The Luxembourg Stock Exchange has a global reach and we are proud to serve as the preferred listing venue for sovereign issuers across the world. With its sovereign sustainable bond issuances, the Philippines has helped pave the way for sustainable finance in Southeast Asia, and our role is to promote these sustainable investment opportunities to the international investor community,” said Julie Becker, CEO of LuxSE.