Market profile

Driven by broad-based expansion in domestic demand, the Philippine economy continues to perform strongly with an annual GDP growth rate of 6.9 per cent in the September quarter of 2017 (the strongest growth since Q3 2016 and above China’s Q3 annual growth). According to the World Bank, the Philippines economy is set to grow between 6.5 to 7.5 per cent and ranks as the world’s tenth fastest growing economy. The current administration aims to reach 7 to 8 per cent growth annually over the next six years, with a A$23.36 billion infrastructure plan to 2022 and a tax reform proposal pending at the Senate (Source: Rappler, Philippines overtakes China in economic growth again , 16 November 2017).

Robust economic growth, rising business confidence, and improved competitiveness outlook are prompting investors to take a closer look at the Philippines and the opportunities it offers. Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) to the Philippines reached A$8.1 billion in the second half of 2017 (Source: Central Bank of the Philippines). The manufacturing sector has been the leading recipient, with food processing, as well as the banking and business process outsourcing (BPO) sectors. The Philippines is set to release a new foreign investment negative list that is said to be “drastically shorter”, thereby presenting a more “aggressive liberalisation” and opening the country to further foreign investment (Source: GMA News Online, PHL to release new foreign investment ‘negative list’ before end of 2017 , September 2017).

Over A$2.2 billion of foreign aid from multi-lateral development banks (MDB) and international donor agencies (IDA) flow into the Philippines, largely into infrastructure, education and capacity building programs (Source: Foreign Aid Transparency Hub).

Bilateral trade between the Philippines and Australia in 2016 was valued at A$4.3 billion and has grown 50 per cent since 2010 (Source: Composition of Trade 2015-16 ).

The Austrade office in the Philippines is also responsible for Guam and Micronesia

More information on doing business in the Philippines

ASEAN NOW – Insights for Australian Business

A digital report on Australia’s trade and investment relationship with ASEAN.

Key sections:

  • Why ASEAN matters to Australia
  • What’s driving growth
  • Opportunities by ASEAN market
  • Practical tips and assistance
  • Case studies.


  • Merchandise exports A$2,193 million
  • Services exports A$920 million
  • Capital Manila
  • Official languages Filipino (Tagalog), English
  • Area 298,170 sq km
  • Population 106.6 million


Information provided by DFAT

Country brief

A comprehensive overview of political, economic and bilateral and regional trade agreements.

» read more at DFAT

Trade and economic fact sheet

Containing general information, recent economic indicators, Australia’s trade and investment relationship with Philippines and their global merchandise trade relationship that is updated twice a year.

» read more at DFAT


Australia's trade at a glanceAustralia's top ten trading partners


The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade’s Smartraveller site provides advice for business travelers and tourists going to Philippines. This is regularly updated and should be checked before planning travel.

» read more at DFAT

Business risks

Bribery of Foreign Officials

Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative

The Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI) is a voluntary mechanism which promotes and supports improved governance in resource-rich countries through the full publication and verification of company payments and government revenues from oil, gas, and mining.

The EITI is supported by governments, industry, and non-government organisations around the world. The Australian Government supports the EITI and encourages Australian companies operating internationally to comply with its recommendations.

OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises

Multinational Enterprises should be aware of the OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises that provide voluntary principles and standards for responsible business behaviour in a variety of areas, consistent with applicable domestic laws. These Guidelines are endorsed and promoted by the Australian Government.

APEC Business Travel Card Scheme

Managed by the Department of Home Affairs, the APEC Business Travel Card Scheme was developed to make travelling within the 21 APEC member countries much simpler and more efficient.

Are you ready to export?

Austrade’s International Readiness Indicator.

An online tool for new exporters that has been designed to help Australian businesses determine whether their business is ready for exporting.

Test Your Readiness

Become an Austrade member

Here are some benefits of being a member:

  • Create email alerts
  • Quick event registration
  • Set country and industry preferences

Join Austrade Today

Export grants

Need help with preparing and lodging your application? We can provide independent consultants to assist.

EMDG applications can be lodged by approved consultants.

Visit the Consultants page

How Austrade can help

Austrade provides information, advice and range of trade services to assist Australian businesses reduce the time, cost and risk associated with exporting.

Help from Austrade