Manila port
Manila port Reuters

Philippine's trade minister, Ramon Lopez, said the Philippines will be among the top 20-business friendly nations in the world by 2020.

Lopez said the target to make the Philippines a top business destination will be possible if streamlining of business processes and automation is made a priority. The trade minister also said that this will help the Philippines improve its ranking on the World Bank's Report.

The Philippines presently ranked 99th in the Worldbank' s 2017 Doing Business Report published in October last year. The Southeast Asian country improved from 103rd in the 2015 report. It was noted in the report that the Philippines was behind many economies in Asia.

The Worldbank report is often used by foreign investors to serve as a reference for their investment.

"We are doing these improvements but the other countries are also doing theirs so it's really a race and it's possible our ranking wouldn't move," Lopez was quoted by the Philippine Daily Inquirer.

Lopez also said that the Philippines has to considerably improve to achieve the goal by 2020, which can be made easier by automation of business and shorten the business processing, added the minister.

The Philippine government's National Competitiveness Council (NCC) also reported that the largest improvement in recent Filipino records had been 30 notches when the country ranked 108th from 138th in 2013.

If the Philippines envisions to be the top 20 business friendly nations, it should leap at least 79 notches in the next two years. The New Zealand government whose country often topped the Worldbank report is providing the Philippines technical assistance to streamline and automate business application procedures.