Philippine Trade & Investment Centre-Singapore Commercial Counsellor Glenn Peñaranda urged Singaporeans and former Philippine nationals to retire and take advantage of the investment opportunities in the Philippines. Speaking in a forum in Singapore hosted by 1Migrate Consulting firm, he said that “Apart from our people’s English skills and warmth and stunning beaches, the country has several investment prospects particularly in manufacturing and construction sectors.”

The Philippine Retirement Authority (PRA) manages the retirement program of the country. In the forum, PRA General Manager Val Cabansag and Marketing Manager Noehl Bautista shared that the PRA grants the Special Resident Retiree Visa and provides assistance throughout the retiree’s stay. The visa allows foreign residents to work or start a business and likewise provides exemptions from income tax over the pension and annuities, and specific customs duties and taxes. While there are restrictions on buying land, they can purchase condominiums under the Philippine Condominium Act. PRA also provides project-matching services to foreign developers in identifying possible locations for retirement projects and to property-owners in marketing their properties as retirement facility or village projects.

Recently, the Philippine Board of Investments (BOI) declared that the country’s Retirement Industry Roadmap will be finalized within the first half of 2016. The roadmap was created by the industry stakeholders together with the BOI and other government agencies with the goal for Philippines to become a retirement haven for immigrants and returning Filipinos.

As a retirement destination, the country boasts of a competent pool of healthcare professionals and world-class wellness facilities. However, Mr. Peñaranda advised the group not to wait for retirement to enjoy all the Philippines has to offer: vibrant culture, tropical climate, modern recreational facilities and affordable cost of living and luxuries.