A Japanese electronics firm “Epson Precision Company” announced last December 2014 it would invest P4.7 billion to build this year, its biggest manufacturing plant in Batangas to increase inkjet printer and 3LCD projector production volumes.
Epson Philippines president and country manager Toshimitsu Tanaka said the new state-of-the-art facilities which begins construction this year are being erected on the existing site in Lipa City, Batangas, expects to start operating by 2017 and it would increase annual capacity by 1.2 million units of printers and projectors.
“I think the Philippines has one of the most competitive labor cost in the region,” Epson Philippines country manager Toshimitsu Tanaka told reporters in an interview last week.
Tanaka said that the labor force in China is now becoming saturated and more expensive, adding that the same is also true in Indonesia, which hosts the company’s second largest plant with 10,000 employees manufacturing inkjets and projectors.
“Based on the current situation, we have no plans to expand the China factory because of labor costs. China’s labor force very, very high by almost 20 percent (compared to the Philippines),” Tanaka said. “The Philippine labor cost is stable so we can predict salary.”
The new Epson electronics plant once completed will employ around 20,000 workers, which will increase production of inkjet printers and 3LCD projectors for the local market and for exports to the US, Japan, and China, a company executive said Thursday.
Epson will also install a solar power generation system with a capacity of about 3,000 kWh on the roof of the new plant. The solar system will reduce overall daytime electricity consumption at Epson Precision Philippines by half.
Tanaka said the company decided to expand its manufacturing plant in the Philippines because it had a cheaper labor cost compared to China and Indonesia, where the company also has manufacturing plants. – Carl E.