Paraguayan Industry and Commerce Minister Luis Castiglioni (3rd from left) and Ambassador Linglingay Lacanlale (2nd from left) led the first Philippines-Paraguay Trade Meeting held in Asuncion, Paraguay, on 14 March 2022.


Asunción, Paraguay/ 14 March 202 – The Philippines and Paraguay, two countries with deep historical bonds, moved a step closer to strengthening their trade and commercial ties by holding the first high-level meeting on trade between the two countries in Asunción, Paraguay on 14 March 2022.

The Official Mission of the Philippines, led by Her Excellency Linglingay F. Lacanlale, Philippine Ambassador to Argentine who has concurrent nonresident jurisdiction over Paraguay, and Mr. Vichael Roaring, Commercial Counsellor for Latin America of the Philippine Trade and Investment Center (PITC)-Mexico, met officials of the Paraguayan Ministry of Industry and Commerce, led by Minister Luis Alberto Castiglioni and the Investment and Export Network (REDIEX) of Paraguay, led by Vice-Minister Estefanía Laterza.

With the aim of deepening commercial ties and business opportunities between the two nations, the two sides agreed to conduct the meeting through the Philippine Embassy in Argentina and the Office of the Commercial Counsellor of Paraguay in Argentina.

In her remarks, Ambassador Lacanlale encouraged Paraguay to explore the possibility of using the Philippines as its entry point to the greater market of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) and also to look into the country as a viable market for Paraguayan goods.

"The Philippines was one of the fastest-growing economies in the world before the pandemic. Our country is now on the road to recovery. Our global growth in 2021 was 5.6%, and the economy is expected to grow by 9% this year. Our trade relations with Paraguay have remained stable but modest in the last four years. We need to do more to expand our cooperation economy," remarked the Ambassador.

For his part, Minister Castiglioni expressed hope that this meeting could generate conditions for a stronger economic and commercial exchange between the Philippines and Paraguay in the near future.

"We hope to have economic and commercial missions from Paraguay to the Philippines and vice versa soon. We, in the public sector, always work very closely with our private sector," the Minister stressed.

The meeting was attended by the movers and shakers of the Paraguayan economy. Minister Castiglioni said that 75% of Paraguay's gross domestic production (GDP) was present during the meeting.

Representatives of the different unions and chambers in Paraguay, namely, the Paraguayan Industrial Union (UIP), UIP Joven, Paraguayan Chamber of Rice Industrialists (CAPARROZ), Chamber of Paraguayan Food Companies (CAPALI), Paraguayan Chamber of Oilseed Processors and Cereals (CAPPRO), Paraguayan Meat Chamber (CPC), Paraguayan Yerba mate Center, beef, poultry and pork slaughterhouses, attended the meeting.

Many of those present in the meeting noted that complementarities between the Philippine and Paraguayan economies exist that both parties could take advantage of. They also noted that the ongoing geopolitical crisis in Ukraine opens up possibilities for the two countries to diversify their respective supply chains and create new opportunities for trade with non-traditional partners.