Iloilo Governor Arthur Defensor Sr. urged the Sangguniang Panlalawigan (SP) to prioritize the review of the Provincial Investment Code.
“I am asking the Sangguniang Panlalawigan to revisit and review our Provincial Investment Code to make it more environment-friendly,” Defensor said during his State of the Province Address (SOPA).
The Provincial Investment Code, which aimed at attracting more investors in the province, identified the preferred investment areas, which include the following: agri-business, tourism and other related enterprises, manufacturing, property development, services and other service oriented enterprises.
Defensor is pushing for the review of the Code “so that [the provincial government] will reach its goal to establish at least two economic zones in Iloilo in the next three years.”
Defensor is eyeing to develop economic zones in the towns of Dumangas, Concepcion, Ajuy and Leganes.
The governor stressed that his administration is “doing well” in improving infrastructures in the province.
“In the truest sense, infrastructure is the main artery of the economy,” Defensor said.
He cited several infrastructure projects funded by the provincial government with the assistance from World Bank through the Philippine Rural Development Program (PRDP).
“The construction of the 28-kilometer road going from Passi City to Gemumua Agahon is well underway. This project costs P264 million,” Defensor said.
Other PRDP projects are the 10-kilometer Poblacion-Tacuyong Norte road in Leon amounting to P117 million , 7-kilometer Parara-Jamog road in Tigbuan amounting to P72 million pesos and Balabag-Sulangan road in Dumangas amounting to P 44.55 million.
“Our continuous and sustained efforts to improve our road networks are in line with our bid to attract more and more investors in the province,” Defensor said.
He added: “In partnership with the Department of Agrarian Reform, we are currently implementing the concreting of vital farm-to-market roads in the municipalities of Barotac Viejo, Bingawan, Dumangas, Lambunao and San Rafael in the amount of P287 million.”
Defensor said that with the continued upgrading of our infrastructure network, “we should expect to do well in rural development and agricultural production.”
PROVINCIAL INVESTMENT CODE
Vice Governor Raul Tupas, in a report by state-run Philippine News Agency, said the review of the Provincial Investment Code will be given priority before the 2016 elections.
According to Tupas, the provincial investment code has been existing for a long time that it needs to be reviewed to help attract new investors.
“We need to align our efforts with the executive agenda,” Tupas added. IMT