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Davao City eyes BPOs, real estate investments in 2013

DAVAO CITY (MindaNews / 2 Jan) – A number of business process outsourcing (BPO) investments and possibly some residential projects are expected investments this year, city investment promotion head Jason Magnaye said Wednesday.

He added that the Davao City Investment Promotion Center will pursue investment promotion activities based on the updated set of priority areas as provided for in the newly promulgated Investment Incentive Code (IIC).The Davao City Investment Incentives Code of 1994, which was amended last year, has additional two investment priority areas in the city, Magnaye said earlier.

These are public-private partnership projects, and production and generation of new sources of energy, which according to him are preferably renewable energy.

The amended IIC’s implementing rules and regulations, which was already approved by the board of directors, is yet to be signed by the mayor, Magnaye said in a text message.

Other preferred areas of new investment or expansion/diversification are agri-business sector, tourism and recreational facilities, light manufacturing and assembly, property development, health and wellness, educational and sports facilities, environmental protection or green projects, and information and communications technology.

He said in an interview last September the new investment incentive code is more detailed such as in the preferred areas of investments, the type of projects are more particularly specified, meaning those not included in the list cannot avail of the incentives.

For instance, for property development projects, only low cost and socialized housing, and business parks and industrial estates classified as special economic zones and IT parks, buildings and centers are listed.

Aside from peace and order, Magnaye said the stability of local laws and their consistency, meaning without gray areas, the leadership, and a faster service in business permits processing and licensing are what matter most for investors.

Busier

Davao City will be busier in 2013 in terms of tourism, according to regional director Art Boncato Jr. of the Department of Tourism (DOT) 11.

He cited the meetings, incentive, conference and exhibitions convention (MICECON) that will be held at the SMX Convention Center here come March.

He also said new hotels will open this year, including three- to four-star rated hotels such as the Park Inn by Radisson near SM Lanang Premier and Kukun Hotel near Abreeza Mall.

First in Asia Pacific

The Park Inn by Radisson Davao is the first Park Inn by Radisson in Asia Pacific, said Gier Sikko, its general manager.

He said last November there are at least a hundred Park Inn by Radisson hotels in different places in Europe, Middle East and Africa that are managed by the Carlson Rezidor Hotel Group.

“But here, this will be the first one in Asia Pacific region. So It’s fantastic and a privilege to have an opportunity to open this one here in Davao,” he told MindaNews.

The hotel will have its soft-opening next month so that it can accommodate participants of the MICE Convention on March 6-9, he said.

He noted that the SM Corporation is the owner and developer of the hotel, saying, “That’s the strategic plan. They would go in other areas in the Philippines where there is growth.”

“There’s a growth in Davao. It’s one of the most important reasons why they built a hotel here. Davao is constantly growing. It’s the city of opportunity,” he said.

He added: “And that’s a positive sign because the more hotels, the more international growth you see in Davao. We would like to be part of that growth.” (Lorie Ann A. Cascaro / MindaNews)

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