LGUs asked to help influence Peza on Metro Cebu exclusion-A A +A
Sunday, February 24, 2013
THOUGH he has yet to follow up on their position regarding new guidelines from the Philippine Economic Zone Authority (Peza) concerning the granting of incentives to developers of IT parks and buildings, Cebu Chamber of Commerce and Industry president Prudencio Gesta hopes to involve the local government units in their request to revisit the new guidelines.
Gesta said the LGUs can use their influence to have Peza change its position about excluding Metro Cebu from the areas that are no longer eligible for the five percent incentive granted to developers of IT parks and buildings.
Earlier the CCCI sent a position paper to the Peza board seeking their reconsideration in excluding Metro Cebu from the areas entitled to the incentive, saying Cebu has not saturated the market for such zones and buildings.
The Peza board released Resolution 12-329 last year, removing the five percent tax holiday granted to developers of IT parks and buildings in Metro Cebu and Metro Manila in a bid to level the playing field among all areas in the country and encourage similar investments in other regions and spur economic development. The incentives granted to companies occupying these buildings will remain.
Gesta said this would put areas in Metro Cebu at a disadvantage. He added that even if the Peza board should clarify that it is only Cebu CIty and not Metro Cebu that is excluded, they still believe the decision should be changed.
He pointed out that the concentration of IT buildings is in small parts of Cebu City. Considering its land area, Gesta said there is much room for more areas in Cebu City to be developed to cater to the booming business process outsourcing and information and communication technology industry.
“Cebu City is not over-supplied with these businesses yet. There is much room for expansion.”
Gesta said that majority of the ICT and BPO businesses are in Cebu City and that the neighboring cities of Mandaue, Lapu-Lapu and Talisay can benefit from the incentives if they start developing to cater to this industry as well.
He believes that if these LGUs also write formally to the Peza and other government agencies that have a say in it, they can use their influence to have the decision changed.
Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on February 25, 2013.