Subic Bay Freeport Zone attracted P100 billion worth of new investments in the first seven months, including a P60-billion Australian joint venture, Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority said Wednesday.
SBMA said the figure represented one of the biggest project approvals in a seven-month period since the Freeport was established in 1992. SBMA said the Freeport attracted only P42 billion worth of new investment projects over the past four years.
SBMA chairman Roberto Garcia said the biggest project approved by the agency this year was the P60-billion joint venture between an Australian company and Asian Institute of Aviation, an existing locator in the Freeport.
“They would transport agricultural products from Australia, mostly meat and seafood, repack them here, and then fly or ship them out to customers worldwide,” he said.
Garcia said the joint venture partners would put up an intermodal cargo terminal, use both airport and seaport and expect to deliver 60 containers per month for the Subic seaport.
“So that is going to be a big help. Their investment is going to be P60 billion for this project alone, and it will generate 800 jobs, not counting those for the construction work,” he said.
The project would also involve building new hangars, as the investors would bring in seven jets for their operations and offer maintenance and repair operations for jets, mostly from Hong Kong.
Garcia said the project, which would occupy the northeast corner of Subic airport, would not affect the proposed use by the Philippine Air Force of the southwest portion of the airport under the Expanded Defense Cooperation Agreement with the US.
The SBMA board also approved an industrial estate project worth P34 billion in a 400-hectare area in the Redondo Peninsula, near the site of Hanjin shipyard.
The proposed industrial estate project will include the development of a 200-megawatt solar plant and the construction of warehouses and logistics facilities and establishment of factories. This is expected to generate 53,000 jobs.
Garcia said Korean shipbuilder Hanjin Heavy Industries received the green light from SBMA to put up a 12-megawatt solar power plant in Redondo.
Another big project approved by the SBMA board was the ship-to-ship transfer operation for liquefied natural gas, which would be worth P5 billion, he said.
“Things are looking good,” Garcia said. He said aside from big-ticket investments, SBMA also approved “a lot of smaller projects.”
“So as far as I’m concerned, we have a lot of activity in the pipeline for the next three to five years,” Garcia said.