SBMA’s 10-point Agenda for the next six years

SUBIC BAY FREEPORT- The new management team of the Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority (SBMA) revealed its 10-Point Agenda which defines the direction of the agency in the next six years.

“The Ten-Point Agenda is a set of priorities we would like to achieve. It is a direction that would guide us where we want to go and that is revitalizing the Subic Freeport,” SBMA Administrator Atty.Wilma “Amy” Eisma said.

The Agenda she said focuses on Locator Service Excellence, the Green Initiative, Safety and Security, Build, Build, Build, Subic Freeport as the Gateway, Community Engagement, Policy Reforms and Good Governance Program, FDIs and MSMEs, the Freeport Expansion, and Tourism Star.

Under the Locator Service Excellence, the SBMA will create a Non-Stop Shop which is a 24/7 on-line customer service and virtual complaint desk, and One-Stop Shop that would receive suggestions and complaints of the visiting public to Subic Bay thru Dial 888 Hotline or personal appearance.

Along with this, the SBMA is institutionalizing the Red Carpet Treatment to all locators and investors by implementing the Cut the Red Tape Project which will shorten to three days the releasing of certificates of registration and tax exemptions (CR/CRTE), building permit, Environmental Compliance Certificate, among others.

For the Green Initiative, this Administration will commence its improved climate change adaptation program thru broader coastal clean-up drives and tree planting activities and the use of renewable energy to mitigate any negative effect of the agency’s operations on the environment and, possibly, to secure ISO 14000 Certificate compliance before the end of the year.

SBMA will institutionalize safety programs across the Freeport by improving its safety and security capabilities in land, sea and forest with the acquisition of new equipment such as speed boats, motorcycles, patrol cars, as well as the prohibition of walk-in vendors and mendicants. These also include the establishment of security protocols, like using the SBMA website and the radio station, and the intensified campaign to make the Freeport drug-free area.

“The Agenda focuses on SBMA’s investment campaign to meet our vision of becoming a highly-urbanized Freeport in the near future. We must immediately start building and improving our facilities,” Eisma said.

The Administrator also said that under the national government’s “Build, Build, Build” program, agency’s engineering department will be able to finalize the feasibility study on Subic’s port development plan, Tipo Road expansion, bulk terminal expansion for PPP, improvement of access roads to Morong and surrounding municipalities, and the construction of SBMA’s corporate center that will house all of the agency’s offices and departments.

Meanwhile, Subic Freeport will be promoted as the Gateway to Southeast Asia and the world by intensifying marketing campaigns for its airport and seaport with the former reviving domestic and international flight operations, regaining status as an international airport and settling pending issues with CAAP; and the latter by introducing more competitive port-related tariffs and fees and promoting ship-to-ship business model to increase container traffic by at least five percent annually.

Complementing its infrastructure development programs, SBMA will step-up promotion the of high technology industries prioritizing research and development (R&D), creative, BPO and ICT while maintaining Japan, Taiwan, South Korea and USA as key sources of foreign direct investments (FDIs).

In the area of the Micro, Small, Medium Enterprises (MSMEs), the agency will push for the signing of an agreement with the Land Bank of the Philippines (LBP) and Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) to provide MSME-investors easy access to their respective investment–related programs. On top of this, SBMA will allocate a marketing budget to launch an aggressive marketing campaign to promote SBFZ, especially in the new frontiers like Russia and China.

Moreover, the SBMA will also drum beat its tourism industry thru Tourism Star programs by organizing an aggressive marketing campaign to promote Subic Bay as the next cruise ship playground, launching several landmark events such as hosting a one-week festival or conference featuring science and engineering design of modern world watercrafts to be dubbed Ultra High Speed Watercraft Festival, and Dragon Boat Festival, music fest, Christmas fest, grand Subic sale, and the like.

To address the shrinking available land for new investments, SBMA will identify areas for possible expansion outside the Freeport and sign a memorandum of understanding with local government units (LGU) as prescribed under the Presidential Proclamation 532 before a master plan will be developed.

For the Community Engagement, SBMA will develop capability building programs with indigenous peoples (IPs) and volunteers in the contiguous LGUs to increase competencies and generate more quality jobs; institutionalize an employment program for Subic Bay volunteers and an educational assistance plan in close coordination with TESDA and DOLE.

“The very important part of the Agenda is the policy reforms and good governance program the SBMA will be initiating that will guarantee the realization of all other initiatives in the agenda,” Eisma explained.

First under this agenda is the filing in Congress the amendment of RA 7227 which will seek to allocate for SBMA the use the one percent (1%) of the five percent (5%) gross income collected in the Subic Freeport; implementation of the moratorium on expansion of leased areas by locators engaged in trading of used trucks and construction equipment; expansion of the Integrity Pledge Program by including port users and other customers.

Also included are an intensified campaign against corruption, smuggling and illicit trade; improved incentive package of investors thru modernizing the Philippine Incentive Regime, and institutionalized programs under the “End Contractualization Initiative.”

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