DBP adds P2.3B for new Bataan ecozone

The planned 75.5-hectare special economic zone in the coastal town of Pilar, Bataan, took shape after the state-owned Development Bank of the Philippines (DBP) granted a P2.3-billion loan to finance the initiative.

DBP president and chief executive officer Emmanuel G. Herbosa said the credit assistance extended to top real estate firm Diamond Land Resources Inc. (DLRI), owned by New San Jose Builders Inc. (NSJBI), will partially finance the first phase of the Bataan Harbor City (BHC) project.

“We in DBP believe that the Bataan Harbor City will usher in a new era of prosperity in the province due to its potential to help attract foreign investments, generate economic opportunities, and create jobs for more Filipinos,” Herbosa said.

DBP is the sixth largest bank in the country in terms of assets and provides credit support to four strategic sectors of the economy — infrastructure and logistics; micro, small and medium enterprises; the environment; and social services and community development.

The BHC is envisioned to become a self-sustained community and a master-planned development composed of a 75.5-hectare industrial estate with a neighboring port facility and an integrated property with leisure, tourism, commercial and residential spaces. DBP’s financing will focus on the horizontal development of the project’s first phase, which includes the industrial park, residential, leisure and tourism components.

DBP executive vice president for Development Lending Paul D. Lazaro said the project is expected to significantly contribute to the economic development of Pilar, a third-class municipality with a population of over 46,000 residents and dubbed as the historical-cultural tourism center of Luzon.

He said the BHC is expected to provide local employment to at least 300 personnel annually, adding, “… the project is seen to boost economic activity in the province.”

“As an economic zone, we foresee this initiative as a key investment promotion tool which increases business, economic and spending activities in the area while providing additional revenue to the local government in the form of taxes, permits and license fees,” Lazaro added.

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