Iloilo is set to reap the fruits of
President Rodrigo Duterte's economic plans.
Department of Budget and Management
Secretary Benjamin Diokno talked about the Philippines' bold
economic plans that focus on top infrastructure and human capital.
The Duterte administration will also strengthen the country's
financial capacities through the general appropriations act and
other budget and cash management reforms as an attempt to sustain
its place as the fastest growing economy in the region. Secretary
Diokno also elaborated on their plans to reach "upper middle-income
status" and reduce poverty incidence significantly as they give the
lion share of the fiscal year to social services.
With plans to decentralize the
development in Metro Manila, the British Ambassador to the
Philippines Daniel Pruce is proud of the growing partnership
between the two countries. With a large British delegation deployed
to strengthen economic cooperation, the 1-billion pounds of
investment will go beyond Metro Manila and in cities like Iloilo.
He also announced that the Commission on Higher Education (CHED)
and the British Council are working on providing more education
opportunities to Filipinos abroad. The University of the
Philippines Visayas also noted that higher education plays a
crucial role in developmental synergy and innovation.
Iloilo Governor Arthur Defensor Sr.
and Mayor Jose Espinosa III was also present to showcase the
several investment opportunities in the city. As the "real Queen
City of the South", they claim to be just one notch below Davao
City and recognizes the British legacy in making Iloilo a
prosperous city. With the "Iloilo means business" campaign, the
city has shown amazing recovery and is ready to produce good
infrastructure and workforce.
Governor Defensor also announced
that they are ready to break ground for the country's biggest water
reservoir that will irrigate 32,000-hectare of rice and sugar
lands. This will help sustain Iloilo's prolific food production,
agri-business, and tourism industries.
Espinosa also planned on keeping
the cost of living in Iloilo 35% cheaper, and eventually, project
Iloilo as a highly urbanized city with the best roads for land and
coastal travel. In terms of real estate, Metro Iloilo is picking up
on the potential of becoming a residential hub and office space for
all. They are also working on getting PEZA accreditation for
several economic zones in Damangas, Concepcion, and Pasi to invite
the Business Process Outsourcing sector for office expansions.
Senate Minority Leader Franklin
Drilon delivered the closing remarks for the trade mission. He
emphasized the long history of Iloilo's economic viability and
development. Drilon also labeled Iloilo as the early adaptor of the
Build, Build, Build program, underlining the political importance
of the ports to the city.
The Iloilo office market is also
looking forward to its own trailblazing evolutions. With the
booming Iloilo Business Park, KMC
Savills aims to offer it as an ideal location to future tenants
and corporate locators. The steady rise of investment and business
opportunities in the city is also a key consideration. Research
Rara also said "The city saw an influx of offshoring and
outsourcing locators in the last five years. This has led to an
expanding office market which was rather non-existent almost a