Cayetano urges biz groups to draw development plan

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Monday, February 24, 2014


CITY OF SAN FERNANDO -- Senator Alan Peter Cayetano over the weekend urged business groups in Central Luzon to come up with a unified development plan that will entice investors to locate in the countryside and eventually decongest Metro Manila.

Cayetano on Friday met with officials of the Pampanga Chamber of Commerce and Industry Inc. (PamCham) and other business executives at the Laus Group headquarters in this city, where he discussed his proposal and his plan to present it to President Benigno Aquino III.

In his brief presentation dubbed “Inclusive Growth Means Looking Beyond Metro Manila,” the senator disclosed that in 2013, the National Government earmarked some P184.2 billion for infrastructure projects, P142.3 billion of which has been allocated for the National Capitol Region (NCR).

“We can very well see that eight out of ten infra projects are in NCR. In the 2011-2016 development plan, the improvement of NAIA (Ninoy Aquino International Airport) gets P15.5 billion while the NLEx-SCTEx Connector Road has a funding of P18 billion. Simply put, the continued huge allocations for Metro Manila means ‘Hey, come to us.’ It means too, that NCR will remain congested for two to three years as investors and people will continue flocking to Manila,” Cayetano said.

He stressed that the business community and groups like PamCham, should come up with an agenda which could be presented to the President, so that the countryside will get its share of the “development pie” and allow for the decongestion of the country’s business and government center.

“Business groups are the right people. They can help redirect and put the government on track. Working together, we can correct actions that are not for decongestion and help promote the development of Central and North Luzon which has Clark and Subic which are foolproof. Massive information, good ideas in the plan and the right infra will certainly work,” Cayetano told Sun.Star Pampanga.

“In our country, three factors are crucial: Divine intervention, when PNoy wants it, and when media likes it. A common agenda will definitely of great significance in our advocacy” he said. (JTD)

Published in the Sun.Star Pampanga newspaper on February 24, 2014.

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