The Philippine Economic Zone Authority (PEZA) is pushing for the implementation of a $16-million halal hub project at the Zamboanga City Economic Zone to achieve the area’s full potential.
PEZA director-general Charito Plaza saidthis was a commitment made during the state visit of President Duterte to Brunei in 2017.
“I did not see any physical implementation or maybe this was mere commitment and not put into reality. I hope there is a followup on the project because Zambaonga ecozone is a vast area,” Plaza said at the signing ceremonies of a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with the Southern Philippines Development Authority (SPDA).
Plaza said at present, the ecozone now only has six investors.
Plaza said she also discussed with the ecozone administration the idea of reviving barter by inviting traders within the Brune-Indonesia-Malaysia-Philippines East Asia Growth Area.
She said the Zamboanga ecozone can offer a space for a barter trading council and for the SPDA to attract more activities and investments.
Plaza said halal hubs and production zones are among the ecozones being promoted by PEZA to stimulate growth in Mindanao.
She said Islamic banks are willing to finance Muslim investors not just in the Middle East but elsewhere.
PEZA’s MOU with SPDA aims to promote investments in Mindanao, particularly locators for 4,000 hectares of property in Lanao del Sur ideal for agro-industrial projects