Thursday, May 14, 2009
DA wants ecozones created for agribusiness.
The Department of Agriculture (DA) wants to create exclusive economic zones for agribusiness that would take into consideration the nuances of food production and an expanded set of incentives for locators.
Philippine Agricultural Development and Commercial Corp. (PADCC) president Marriz Agbon said Agriculture Secretary Arthur Yap has approached the Philippine Economic Zone Authority (Peza) on the creation of such zones.
“Ideally, the agribusiness zones should be near the port so [locators] would be able to easily ship out their produce. The area should also be bigger because potential investors require large tracts of land for planting,” said Agbon in a telephone interview.
The PADCC chief said the DA is now surveying areas where the ecozones could be built. PADCC is a government-owned and controlled corporation attached to the DA, and is in charge of assisting investors who want to go into joint venture deals with local agriculture companies.
In relation to the agribusiness zones, the DA wants to expand the scope of incentives for locators.
The perks and incentives Peza and the Board of Investments (BOI) give local and foreign investors include up to eight years maximum of income tax holiday—specifically for firms registered with the BOI as a “pioneer” business—and a 5-percent gross income tax in lieu of all national and local taxes for Peza-registered firms.
In her 2007, State of the Nation Address, President Arroyo said she has approved the establishment of an agribusiness zone in Lallo, Cagayan.
“The recent visit of Saudi investors compelled [us] to seek solution to a dilemma where investors want to own the land they are putting investments into. Saudi companies want that, but again, that is not allowed by existing Philippine laws,” said Agbon.
The Saudi Investment Team that arrived in the country last week committed to invest $300 million in the country’s farm sector. Saudi businessmen expressed keen interest in the propagation of corn, basmati rice, alfalfa, bananas, pineapples and mariculture projects.
Agbon said the $300-million commitment involves the development of some 20,000 hectares of agriculture lands, although the government has allotted 1.2 million to 1.5 million hectares of forestry management areas to accommodate possible investments from the Saudis.
By Business Mirror
Click the links below to lower your input costs and increase your harvest and quality in your agri-business.
Click here to review Nutrplant AG Organic Fertilizer
Click here to review Nutriplant SD Organic Seed Germination Fertilizer
Click here to review Apsa80 Adjuvant to increase the efficacy of all your applied products