PHILIPPINES and INDIA Promise and Regional Co-Operation

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July 4, 2023

PHILIPPINES and INDIA Promise and Regional Co-Operation



  • The year 2022 marked a significant turning point for the world as Covid-19-related restrictions gradually lifted, leading to a renewed focus on international trade, commerce, and strategic partnerships. Against this backdrop, the Philippines and India have reinvigorated their cooperation after almost three years, aiming to strengthen bilateral ties and foster economic resurgence in the post-pandemic era. This article highlights the economic promise and growth trajectory of India and the Philippines, explores the prospects for expanding trade and economic cooperation between the two countries, and discusses opportunities for regional cooperation in the Indo-Pacific.

India’s Economic Promise and Growth Trajectory:

  • India’s economic potential is poised to make it the world’s third-largest economy by 2027. With a consistently impressive average GDP growth rate of 5.5 percent over the past decade, India stands out as the fastest-growing among the large economies globally. The country offers numerous investment opportunities across various sectors, attracting both domestic and foreign investors. India’s emerging middle class presents a significant consumer market that drives consumption and fuels economic growth, creating opportunities for businesses and stimulating economic development.

Philippines’ Economic Promise and Growth Trajectory:

  • The Philippines is on the threshold of achieving upper-middle-income status, signifying significant progress in its economic development and per capita income. With ambitious goals to become a trillion-dollar economy by 2033, the Philippines aims for sustained economic growth and prosperity. President Ferdinand R Marcos Jr’s socio-economic agenda focuses on reducing poverty and fostering sustainable economic growth, setting the stage for inclusive development and resilience across key sectors such as agriculture, energy, and infrastructure. The country places emphasis on empowering its population and fostering greater inclusion to create a more equitable and prosperous nation.

Prospects for Expanding Trade and Economic Cooperation:

  • Both the Philippines and India have vibrant innovation ecosystems and a growing focus on technological advancements. Collaborative efforts in research and development, knowledge sharing, and technology transfer can lead to the creation of innovative solutions and products, enhancing productivity, efficiency, and competitiveness across various sectors. The collaboration can extend to clean energy projects, leveraging India’s expertise in renewable energy and the Philippines’ substantial investments in the sector. Strengthening digital infrastructure and connectivity, defense and security cooperation, regional economic integration within ASEAN, and promoting people-to-people exchanges can further deepen economic cooperation between the two countries.

Opportunities for Regional Cooperation in the Indo-Pacific:

  • To create a robust and interconnected economic ecosystem, it is crucial to strengthen economic integration within the Indo-Pacific region. The Philippines and India can actively participate in initiatives such as the ASEAN Economic Community, RCEP, and other regional economic forums. Collaborative efforts in developing infrastructure, ensuring maritime security and freedom of navigation, promoting sustainable development and climate change initiatives, and fostering people-to-people exchanges and cultural cooperation can contribute to regional stability, resilience, and long-term prosperity. Upholding a rules-based order and engaging in multilateral platforms will play a vital role in shaping regional norms, promoting dialogue, and addressing shared challenges.

The Conclusion:

As the Philippines-India Joint Commission on Bilateral Cooperation convenes for its fifth iteration, the two nations are poised to strengthen their partnership. With a foundation of nearly 75 years of diplomatic ties and shared values as democratic Asian republics, the Philippines and India are well-positioned to navigate the challenges and opportunities of the post-pandemic era. By leveraging their economic promise and common interests, these two nations can reinforce bilateral relations, foster economic resurgence, and actively contribute to regional cooperation in the Indo-Pacific

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PHILIPPINES and INDIA Promise and Regional Co-Operation | Vaid ICS Institute