Philippines Country profile

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Total two-way trade between Australian and the Philippines reached A$4.3b in 2016, up 70% since 2010.  Australian merchandise exports to the Philippines were worth A$1.9b made up primarily of wheat, precious metals, copper and coal. Australian imports from the Philippines were worth A$770m and consisted mainly of gold, copper and electrical machinery.

Over 287 Australian companies are now fully established in the Philippines. Australia and the Philippines are both members of APEC, and Australia is an active participant in the East Asia Summit (EAS). The ASEAN-Australia-New Zealand Free Trade Agreement (AANZ) now allows for 95% of Australian products to enter the Philippines duty free while 97% of products made in the Philippines can enter Australia with the same advantage.

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Philippine student enrolments and tourist arrivals into Australia have grown rapidly over the past decade. There were approximately 107,200 Filipino tourists visiting Australia throughout 2016, close to double from 2012, and there were over 11,000 student enrolments. This was likely driven by the appreciation of the peso against the AUD, though this trend has begun to reverse over the last 18 months.

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In 2016, Australia’s investment in the Philippines was A$9.3b, accounting for 0.2% of Australia’s total portfolio of foreign direct investment. The Philippines’s investment in Australia was A$1.3b, a near threefold increase from 2015. But this is still well below the two major sources of FDI, the US with A$860b and the UK with A$515b.

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