MARIVELES, Bataan – The Authority of the Freeport Area of Bataan (AFAB) has secured P6.2 billion worth of investment pledges in 2015, as international companies pitch top dollar in manufacturing and business process outsourcing (BPO) in this booming seaside zone.
The AFAB locked in 28 new business projects last year amounting to P6,228,299,979.30. Most of the investment pledges were poured into the industries of manufacturing, BPO, information technology (IT), tourism, and power, leading to the freeport’s multi-faceted growth.
“The FAB has been tagged as the emerging economic dragon of the country after it maintained its status as the fastest growing freeport from 2012 to 2014,” AFAB stated in a statement.
Some 16 BPO companies will open in the first IT Technopark in the province.AFAB disclosed that major locators include a manufacturer of high-end bag accessories, a food processing firm, and corporations with businesses related to renewable energy projects and tourism development. “The newly registered locators will open at least 4,900 jobs in the next three years,” AFAB stated.
Also, the LKY Resorts and Hotels, Inc. opened last year the first four-star hotel in the freeport, the Oriental Hotel Bataan. It is one of the 114 registered locators in FAB as of December last year, expanding the influx of international firms to include Chinese, Korean, Taiwanese, American, Japanese, British, Bahraini, French and German businesses.
FAB is the emerging fashion manufacturing hub of the Philippines as it possesses a budding cluster of companies that produce high-end brands of garments, apparel, shoes, and accessories like bags, and jewelries, among others.
It envisions to be the freeport of choice in the country by 2020, and to become a center of trade, innovation and sustainable development in Asia that promotes work-life balance and global competitiveness.