MANILA – At least 46 economic zone projects are awaiting Presidential Proclamation as new Philippine Economic Zone Authority (PEZA) ecozones.
PEZA Director General Charito Plaza told reporters that six of these applications were pending at the Office of the President (OP) since the Aquino administration and the rest were received by the OP during the Duterte administration.
The total value of these 46 projects reached over P31 billion.
Eleven projects were developed for manufacturing activities, 32 are IT parks and centers, and there are one each for medical tourism, agro-industrial project, and tourism development.
Manufacturing ecozones with pending applications are located in Laguna, Batangas, Cavited, Bataan, Cebu, Negros Occidental, and Cotabato.
The IT parks and centers are mostly located in the National Capital Region particularly in Taguig City, Quezon City, Pasig, Muntinlupa, and Las Piñas, as well as the “next wave” cities for the IT and business process outsourcing sector such as Cebu and Davao Region.
There are also investments in IT park and centers in Cebu, Davao Region, Cagayan de Oro, Bacolod, Cavite, Laguna, Bulacan, Bataan, and Baguio City.
The medical tourism development is located in Cebu while the new tourism project is in Compostela Valley.
In the first five months of the year, investment approvals in PEZA climbed 98 percent to P107.75 billion from P54.38 billion in the same period in 2016.
These investments came from 240 projects seeking PEZA registration in January to May 2017, lower by 5.88 percent from last year’s 255 projects.
Employment in PEZA in the January-April period rose 5.73 percent to 1.34 million this 2017 from 1.27 million in 2016.
Export revenues of PEZA enterprises also went up by 13.57 percent to USD16.5 billion in January to April this year from USD14.5 billion in the same period a year ago.