Posted 3 months ago
SUBIC BAY FREEPORT—Senator Richard Gordon has called on the Subic Bay Freeport business community to support his proposal to establish an investment corridor in Central Luzon that will encourage more business and livelihood activities and spur further development in the area.
|Senator Richard Gordon|
Speaking during the North Luzon Business Conference here last week, Gordon said he has filed Senate Bill No. 1325, or “An Act Creating the Regional Investment and Infrastructure Corporation of Central Luzon,” to facilitate the creation of an investment corridor in the region.
The senator explained that the proposed Regional Investment and Infrastructure Corp. aims to attract more foreign investors by way of providing for a road network system that will interconnect airports and seaports in Luzon.
He added that the proposed legislation will provide tax incentives for companies and will utilize the area to help ease the traffic currently weighing down the Metro Manila area. This will further ease the congestion of the seaports and airports in Manila, he said.
Gordon, who served as the first chairman of the Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority, also pointed out that Central Luzon is the only region in the country that has three airports like New York, referring to Manila, Clark and Subic.
“Central Luzon also has three seaports—Subic, Mariveles and Manila, and four if we include Batangas—which are complemented by a network of highways,” said Gordon.
He said the country needs to optimize the use of its infrastructures and pointed out that the Central Luzon area is connected by major highways: The North Luzon Expressway, the Subic-Clark-Tarlac Expressway, the Tarlac-Pangasinan-La Union Expressway, and the Olongapo-Gapan Highway.
Central Luzon is also connected to various industrial zones managed by the Export Processing Zone Authority and the Tourism Infrastructure and Enterprise Zone Authority.
In response, business leaders from the Metro Olongapo Chamber of Commerce Inc., the Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry, and other business groups attending the conference pledged their support to Gordon’s bill.
Gordon’s bill had earlier found resonance during the Philippine Investment Promotion Plan Investment Roadshow to Taiwan, when SBMA Administrator and CEO Wilma Eisma urged businessmen in Taipei and Taichung City to consider the so-called Central Luzon Manufacturing and Logistics Zone as a prime investment destination.
Eisma said the CMLZ, composed of Clark Freeport, Subic Bay Freeport, and the Freeport Area of Bataan, has strategic location, ample space for manufacturing, developed infrastructure support, and generous tax and fiscal incentives.
The area has ample supply of talented and skilled labor, service utilities for industries and businesses, secured corridor without traffic congestion, and enviable live-work-play environment, Eisma added.
Eisma also said that Central Luzon is perfect for targeted key industries like electronics, automotive parts and aerospace products for Clark; shipbuilding and maritime industries, including cruise ships for Subic; and high-end garments manufacturing for Bataan.