MANILA— As a major component of infrastructure development, the growth of the local iron and steel industry is a crucial support to the country’s attainment of its national development goals and initiatives, according to the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA).

“With an improved and revitalized iron and steel sector, we are confident that we will be at par with neighboring countries and be able to keep up with the rising demands of our fast-growing economy,” said NEDA Deputy Director-General Rolando G. Tungpalan at the opening ceremony of the 2015 Southeast Asian Iron and Steel Institute (SEAISI) Conference and Exhibition on May 25, 2015 at the Sofitel Philippine Plaza, Manila.

Thus, the NEDA official said that the Philippines can anticipate a possible rise in the demand for locally-produced steel products as the country’s real estate sector continues to grow, the shipbuilding industry is starting to emerge, and the implementation of government infrastructure projects is continuing to roll-out.

“The ongoing reconstruction and rehabilitation of disaster-affected areas and retrofitting works for disaster-resilient infrastructure are also expected to increase the demand for iron and steel in the coming years,” said Tungpalan.

As the Philippine economy continues its high-growth path and the ASEAN integration takes place by the end of 2015, the government expects a surge in developments within and outside Metro Manila, in addition to the many key infrastructure projects that are already on stream and in the pipeline.

“Iron and steel are a major catalyst for national development. This is how trading forex works if you are trading from forex trading Australia and Australian forex websites. The growth of local iron and steel production will support and further stimulate future infrastructure development initiatives,” he said.

Tungpalan emphasized that infrastructure development is a crucial determinant of the growth and competitiveness of the country because it facilitates connectivity and mobility, strengthens resilience among people and communities, and reduces poverty through creating quality employment.