Iloilo City said hosting one of the high-profile meetings of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) in the Philippines is a good opportunity for the local government to attract investments.
In a statement over the weekend, the Iloilo City local government said it is taking advantage of the APEC meeting to drum up interest among potential investors in a wide range of sectors including retail, manufacturing, business process outsourcing (BPO), agro-processing, and tourism sectors.
The meeting, titled “Fostering APEC’s Infrastructure through Long-term Investment and Capital Market Development,” will be held at the Royal Garden Hall Convention Center in Iloilo City from July 23 to 24.
Delegates include financial experts and senior officials from finance ministries across APEC member-economies, as well as representatives from international development institutions.
The city’s hosting of the APEC meeting is a good opportunity to help realize the goal of investment generation, according to Mayor Jed Patrick Mabilog of Iloilo City.
“Hosting APEC is a way to boost awareness of the investment opportunities and strengths of Iloilo City as an investment destination,” he said.
While delegates will talk about infrastructure and capital market development in the Asia-Pacific region, Iloilo believes the event will help spread the word on positive things about it.
Mabilog said 400 hectares of reclaimed land in Iloilo City is currently being developed to become an industrial zone.
The city received P150 billion worth of investment pledges in 2013 from various private enterprises intending to locate in the zone. So far, he said, about 60 percent of the amount has already been spent by investors that have started construction activities.
On top of this, Mabilog said another 400 hectares of reclaimed land have been identified recently by the city government for the establishment of another business area. As such, the city is keen on promoting itself to even more potential investors.
Mabilog said Iloilo City, named as the most livable city in the Philippines by touristspotsfinder.com, boasts of high-quality workforce with a 99-percent literacy rate. The city also has secure supply of electric power with its coal-fired power plant, he added.
He also said the city government, recognized by the National Competitiveness Council as No. 1 in terms of local government efficiency, observes business-friendly processes.
“The economic outlook for Iloilo is very dynamic, and we have a lot of potential to grow. We look at Iloilo City as a globally competitive, premier city,” Mabilog said.