FOR four years in a row, the Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry (PCCI) has chosen Bacolod City as a national finalist in the 2020 Most Business-Friendly Local Government Unit (LGU) Awards.
The PCCI is the biggest organization of businessmen in the country. The awarding ceremony for the most business-friendly LGUs is usually held in October during the Philippine Business Conference and Expo.
The PCCI, through LGUs Awards chair Jose Alejandro, has formally informed Mayor Evelio Leonardia Tuesday, September 22, that Bacolod City has advanced to the final judging of this year’s search.
“We are inspired that we are being consistently recognized for our business-friendly environment by no less than the PCCI," Leonardia said.
“We know that this pandemic has derailed our economy and even our lives. We are aware that there is a disruption of our business activities, but the PCCI recognition should remind us and reassure us that once we get over this crisis, Bacolod has the capacity to reclaim its old glory,” the mayor added.
The PCCI conducts the annual search to recognize the outstanding efforts and commendable practices of LGUs in the country to promote trade and investments, employment, transparency, accountability and efficiency in delivering business services.
This year, the search will focus on “significant initiatives introduced by the LGU to address the major challenges currently faced in order to successfully restore and increase the business operations within the locality.”
In line with this, Bacolod was requested to prepare a five-minute video presentation to be submitted to the PCCI secretariat prior to the virtual final judging scheduled on September 28 via Zoom.
After the video presentation, Leonardia will then face the PCCI panel in the question-and-answer portion.
In the past years, Bacolod City had received various awards for its business-friendly climate.
In 2007, with Leonardia as mayor, the PCCI had recognized Bacolod as the “Most Business-Friendly City” in the country.
In 2017, the “City of Smiles” was among the LGUs that landed in the Top 3 of the same contest—the only highly urbanized city (HUC) outside Metro Manila to have achieved this feat that year. In 2018, Bacolod received a special citation under the City Level 1 category.
The latest accolade given by the PCCI to Bacolod was in 2019—a special citation for its “sustained efforts to accelerate socio-economic growth and development as reflected by the significant increase in the new investments and locally-generated income.”
Aside from the PCCI, The Manila Times, the oldest national broadsheet in the country, had also acknowledged Bacolod City’s business-friendly atmosphere several times.
Last year, The Manila Times chose Bacolod as the “Top Philippine Model City” in the 2019 Search for the Philippine Model Cities and Municipalities, reclaiming the title only after a year.
In 2018, the City placed second as the “most livable urban center in the country,” next to Davao City in the same search. Bacolod was acknowledged as the “Most Business-Friendly City” that year.
The first time Bacolod got the same award from the same newspaper was in 2017, which was also the first year of its awards.
Bacolod also received in 2019 two special awards from The Manila Times for being “business-friendly” and having “high returns and [being a] retirement haven.” (PR)