Malaysia's Valiram Group eyes expanding in PH in next 5 years – Malacañang

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, September 16) — Valiram Group, a retail specialist based in Malaysia, is looking at expanding its operations in the Philippines in the next five years by pitching to President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. on Saturday the development of airport outlets for duty-free retail tourism.

In a statement, the Presidential Communications Office (PCO) said Marcos held a meeting with Valiram officials in Singapore, where the Malaysian group said "some brands are not yet represented in the Philippines," which is why it is "looking forward to expanding very quickly."

According to Malacañang, a Valiram official said the group's development priorities include having duty-free access at airports, adding the company is building more airport walk-through stores to improve customer experience and remove the "stress and hassles of security checks."

"This is what you need: you need space. Almost a singular operator that can deliver a world-class experience," the official told Marcos.

"I think you need to have these pockets of spaces that are dedicated for luxury travel retail, and you can have all the categories, whether it's fragrance, cosmetics, tobacco, you know, fashion and accessories. Watches [are] also a big business in airports as well," the official added.

Marcos acknowledged that retail business is an "important part of the economy" and, in the case of Valiram, of the tourism industry, the PCO said.

The president previously met Indian infrastructure development GMR Group on the sidelines of the 2023 Asian Summit in Singapore to express interest in investing in the country, particularly in airports, roads and energy projects.

The firm is among the potential bidders in the ₱170.6-billion rehabilitation of the Ninoy Aquino International Airport.

READ: India's GMR Group eyes investment in PH infra, energy projects – Palace

Also on Saturday, Marcos talked with Dyson, a Singapore-based multinational technology company, about its £166-million investment pledge or around ₱11 billion in the Philippines by 2024.

Malacañang said Marcos was "delighted to hear about the interest of Dyson Limited to invest in the Philippines as he emphasized that they made the right decision in choosing the country for their investments."

In May, Dyson announced it would be investing in a new factory in Sto. Tomas, Batangas, which will span the equivalent of 92 basketball courts, for its research, development, and advanced motor manufacturing capabilities.

Dyson officials told Marcos that their investment would generate jobs for around 1,250 employees and would move more contract manufacturing into the Philippines by mid-2024, or the "second or third quarter" of the year.