Manila, Philippines — In an encouraging move towards achieving energy security and sustainability, President Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. of the Philippines has expressed gratitude for the unwavering support of Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group Inc. (MUFG), a leading Japanese financial services company, in propelling the nation’s transition from fossil fuels to renewable energy. During a courtesy visit from MUFG Chairman Mike Kanetsugu at Malacañang on July 11, President Marcos emphasized the crucial role of striking a balance between renewable energy sources and traditional fossil fuels.
President Marcos underlined the Philippines’ vulnerability to the impacts of climate change and stressed the nation’s active commitment to reshaping the energy landscape in favor of renewable sources. Acknowledging the remarkable strides made by the Philippines in energy and infrastructure transitions over the past three decades, Chairman Kanetsugu recognized the country’s impressive growth and echoed his belief that energy transition is a paramount agenda for the nation’s development.
MUFG, a distinguished Japan-based bank holding and financing service company, has been a frontrunner in promoting sustainable investments. In 2016, the company acquired a 20-percent stake in Security Bank Corporation for P36.9 billion, exemplifying its dedication to supporting the Philippines in its pursuit of energy security and sustainability.
Present at the meeting were officials from the Development Bank of the Philippines (DBP), including President and Chief Executive Officer Michael De Jesus and Senior Vice President Ronaldo Tepora. Representatives from Security Bank Corporation, namely Interim Chairman Cirilo Noel, Executive Vice President and Director Juichi Umeno, and Director Maria Cristina Tingson, also participated in the courtesy call.
MUFG has made significant contributions to the Philippine economy and investment landscape. In 2018, the company signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Board of Investments, facilitating connections between local Filipino businesses and Japanese investors through business matching activities. This initiative aims to foster greater economic cooperation and capitalize on mutual investment opportunities.
Furthermore, MUFG launched the Interbank Fund Management Service (IBFM) in 2017, allowing customers to send remittances without incurring additional costs. In collaboration with Security Bank, the company also donated P44 million to the Association of Filipino Students in Japan, providing support to students affected by the adverse impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic.
MUFG’s contributions extend beyond financial aid. The Presidential Communications Office (PCO) highlighted the company’s provision of bank guarantees to the Department of Transportation (DOTr) and the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) for infrastructure projects like the North-South Commuter Railway (NSCR) Project and the Metro Manila Subway Project. These projects receive funding from the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA), showcasing MUFG’s commitment to facilitating the nation’s infrastructure development.
Moreover, MUFG actively engages in trade transactions with government agencies involved in critical projects such as the construction of the 54.6-kilometer Blumentritt-Calamba Section of the NSCR and the 36-kilometer Metro Manila Subway line project. Through its collaborations and support, MUFG aims to contribute to the successful realization of these vital infrastructure endeavors.
The partnership between the Philippines and Japan holds tremendous promise for accelerating the transition to renewable energy. By harnessing MUFG’s financial expertise and resources in conjunction with the Philippines’ commitment to balancing renewable and conventional energy sources, both nations can play a significant role in fostering sustainable development and mitigating the impact of climate change.
As the world increasingly recognizes the urgency of transitioning to renewable energy, the collaboration between the Philippines and Japan serves as a positive example of international cooperation. Embracing the principles of sustainable development and investing in clean energy technologies, countries can pave the way for a greener future that ensures both energy security and environmental preservation. The unwavering commitment demonstrated by MUFG and the Philippines marks a pivotal moment in the country’s journey towards a sustainable and resilient energy sector.