(Pasay City, 27 September 2019)… Palawan’s capital, Puerto Princesa City, has gained a total of P27.55 billion worth of investments committed by 12 local and foreign firms driven by the ease of doing business and robust infrastructure in the city.
Speaking at the first Puerto Princesa City Business Forum held in Pasay City, Mayor Lucilo R. Bayron was elated by the confidence and support they received from the private sector.
According to him, the projects they pledged—either set immediately or for the next three to five years—will not only bolster the local economy, but also generate employment opportunities for the people.
“We look forward to receiving them to the City of Puerto Princesa as they continue with their investments,” he said, while ensuring that they will always take care of the investors’ needs.
The fresh investments came from various companies in the tourism, food, agriculture, fishery, education, hospitality, healthcare, and information technology-business process management (IT-BPM) industries, among others.
These include Oma I’Dang Maria, which committed an investment of P10 million; APL Food Services, P10 million; Puerto Princesa Memorial Park, P25 million; Oneson Properties & Development Corp., P75 million; Princesa Garden Island Resort and Spa, P275 million; Astoria Hotels and Resorts Group, P600 million; Adventist Hospital Palawan, P1.5 billion; YIBU Education Technology Company Ltd., P2.1 billion; Allied Care Experts Medical Center, P3.8 billion; CoHo by Vista land, P3.8 billion; Green Asia Unlimited and Development Corp., P7.55 billion; and SM Prime Holdings, Inc. (SMPHI), P17.55 billion.
Mayor Bayron attributed the multisectoral investment initiatives to the city government’s sound business reforms, streamlined regulatory and registration processes, and attractive incentive policies.
He, likewise, gave credit to their continuous overhaul of roads, improvement of transport and communication systems, ample supply of basic utilities like water and electricity, and expansion of local and international gateways through airports, seaports and even roll-on/roll-off (RoRo) facilities.
“All the foregoing fruits that Puerto Princesa City reaps are indeed trailblazer, supporting innovation and advancement,” said the local chief executive.
As one of the partners of the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) Cities Development Initiative through the Strengthening Urban Resilience for Growth with Equity (SURGE) project, Puerto Princesa is among the eight cities in the country USAID is helping to create a favorable business climate through investment promotion activities like the business forum.
“Through the Cities Development Initiative or CDI, USAID was able to work closely with cities such as Puerto Princesa in developing strategic programming that will address developmental challenges. This has opened a lot of opportunities for growth, innovation, and prosperity for Puerto Princesa,” said USAID Acting Mission Director Patrick Wesner.
Given the event’s success, which drew more than 250 potential investors from different sectors, the mayor urged them to consider investing in his area of jurisdiction.
Apart from the conducive business environment and enhanced infrastructure, he boasted Puerto Princesa’s strategic location, rich biodiversity, clean environment, scenic attractions, high demand for goods and services, and strong trade and economic relations in the region.
It is for these reasons that the competitiveness ranking of the city improved from 87th in 2015 to 23rd in 2018, the mayor cited.
“Come, join us and let us make history together. I look forward to welcoming you to the City of Puerto Princesa,” Bayron stressed.
Themed “Puerto Princesa: Your Investment, Our Commitment,” the business conclave was supported by SM Prime Holdings Inc., Astoria Palawan, Seaoil Foundation, and Stellar Grounds Puerto Princesa. Media partners were ANC, BusinessWorld, and Philippine Daily Inquirer.