STATE-OWNED universities and colleges (SUCs) and private-owned ones can turn their idle properties into an ecozone.
This, as the Philippine Economic Zone Authority (Peza) invites the academe, especially those that own big hectares of land, to invest in the development of knowledge, innovation, science and technology (Kist) parks.
In her recent visit to Cebu for a two-day workshop last week, Peza Director General Charito Plaza said they wanted Kist parks to be set up in every region to create stronger links between the academe and industries, boost foreign enrollment and accelerate the growth of the country’s high-value services.
Plaza said this was one venture where the landed educational institutions could make their properties productive as potential locators leased the property.
Plaza said Kist parks were more suitable within campuses so there would be early collaboration with the academe and industries. It is also a viable location for firms like IT industries because safety and security features are already implemented in most universities.
“We are inviting those campuses that have idle properties or campuses that still have big areas for future projects to venture into an ecozone development through Kist parks,” she said.
Peza has consulted the Philippine Association of State Universities and Colleges for the development of Kist parks nationwide.
She said they already entered into a memorandum of agreement to conduct a technical workshop for the design and master-planning of Kist parks for interested universities.
Apart from the conventional IT-enabled activities, Peza Deputy Director General for Policy and Planning Theo Panga said companies into technology, innovation and research and development may register with them as locators in the Kist parks, where their pioneering products/services and innovative solutions may cater to both export and domestic markets.
Plaza added the academe may also tap big developers in the country to help them build the Kist park for them.
These parks are attractive and value-adding because these will entice the schools’ foreign counterparts to expand operations and attract foreign students to study in the country.
Peza locators enjoy incentives ,such as income tax holiday, tax-free importation of raw materials and capital equipment, domestic sales allowance, exemption from payment of local government taxes and fees, and special visa for foreign investors and immediate family members, among others.