Studies Highlight the Philippines’ Attractiveness for Investors and Continued Growth

The Philippines is attractive for global investors with its young population, English proficiency, tech-savvy workforce, as well as being primed for growth.

The Philippines is a “country of interest” for global investors with its young population, English proficiency, and tech-savvy workforce.

That’s according to early-stage startup accelerator Founders Launchpad (FL), which consolidated data and insights from research firms to come up with a short list of the country’s advantages in terms of attracting investors.

One of the Philippines’ strengths is its rapidly expanding young population, the accelerator noted, with the country having a median age of 24.5 years old, compared with the 43.4 and 41.8 median ages of developed countries South Korea and Singapore, respectively. The Philippines is also younger than its neighbors Vietnam, Malaysia, and Indonesia, which have median ages of 32.0, 29.9, and 29.4, respectively.

This young and growing workforce will be an advantage, as many countries are currently struggling with aging populations. The trend in population growth will position the country to become among the top 15 largest economies in the world by 2075, thanks to a flourishing labor market, FL said, citing data from Goldman Sachs. The Philippines has a fertility rate of 2.7 compared to the global average of 2.3 and the Asia Pacific region average of 1.9.

The country’s young, tech-savvy population is also quickly adapting to the digital economy, FL said, which is “creating a robust pool of tech talent to meet the growing demand for skilled tech labor.” The digital shift is further accelerated by high internet and mobile phone usage rates, the accelerator stated. The Philippines tops the global average of time spent on the Internet, clocking in at 8 hours and 52 minutes, while also leading the percentage of time spent on mobile phones at 93.7%.

The gross transaction value of digital payments in the Philippines reached $80 billion in 2022, according to Statista. By 2030, the gross transaction value of digital financial services in the country is forecast to reach $220 billion, the data firm said.

Philippines: Fastest Growth in Southeast Asia

According to a separate study from McKinsey & Company, the Philippines was the fastest growing economy across Southeast Asia with a gross domestic product (GDP) growth rate of 5.6%, beating China and Cambodia which both had rates of 5.2%, and surpassing the global average of 3.2%. The growth was driven by a resumption in commercial activities and infrastructure spending, the consulting company said.

Most sectors in the country showed progress, highlighted by transportation and storage with 13% growth, construction with 9%, and financial services also with 9%. The study attributed the strong growth in the three sectors to major transportation infrastructure flagship projects from the government; increased construction of residential, commercial, and industrial areas; and growth in digital adoption and banking penetration. 

“Should projections hold, the Philippines is expected to, once again, show significant growth in 2024, demonstrating its resilience despite various global economic pressures,” Mckinsey said. In three forecasted scenarios for 2024, the company predicts GDP growth of 4.8% for a “slower growth” scenario, 5.2% for a “soft landing” scenario, and 6.1% for an “accelerated growth” scenario.

FL cited data from Foxmont Capital Partners, Boston Consulting Group, and Mckinsey. 

For its study, McKinsey cited data from the Central Bank of the Philippines (Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas); the Department of Energy Philippines; the IT and Business Process Association of the Philippines (IBPAP); and the Philippines Statistics Authority.

Founders Launchpad is an industry-agnostic early-stage startup accelerator based in Metro Manila. It provides funding, resources and hands-on guidance to high-potential tech startups to help them launch and scale their businesses.