COTABATO CITY, Maguindanao—The Regional Board of Investment of the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao approved last week the registration of a P1.3-billion palm oil plantation project of Gintong Agri-Corporation in Datu Odin Sinsuat town, this province, a board executive said.
Lawyer Ishak v. Mastura, RBOI-ARMM chairman, said the company “is a partnership between Singaporean investors and local community cooperatives whose members own the land to be developed into an oil palm plantation.”
Mastura told media the GAC, headed by Alex Fergusson, will finance and manage the plantation “under a nucleus estate system where full support from technical advice to market assistance would be provided to participating farmers” even as the project is set to employ more than 1,000 workers during its full operation.
The RBOI registered a total investment of P6.5 billion in 2015, he said, adding that more investors are expected to come to the region this year, confident that they can do good business owing to the area’s improved peace and order situation.
Mastura said that related to the construction of an oil depot, a bulk water treatment and supply system and an industrial waste management and treatment project are now in the works.
He claimed that GAC had submitted to the RBOI a plan to initially develop a 5,000-hectare oil palm plantation in Datu Odin Sinsuat which the company would later expand to 20,000 hectares in the next few years in adjacent Talayan and Guindulungan municipalities, even as it would also build and operate facilities to produce crude palm oil and palm kernel oil.
Meanwhile, Edgar Bullecer, an official of the Chiquita Unifrutti, which invested P3.7 billion last year in Cavendish banana plantation in Maguindanao, stressed his firm’s determination to continue investing in the region.