DAVAO CITY (MindaNews/ 21 December) – A big steel manufacturing company from Davao City’s sister city, Jinjiang, China expressed interest to invest here, a move that will create job opportunities for locals, an official said.
In an interview, Davao City Investment Promotions Center head Lemuel G. Ortonio said a Filipino-Chinese businessman signed a memorandum of agreement with the Chinese company to start the study on the city’s potential as a site for its steel fabrication plant during the visit of City Mayor Sara Duterte in Jinjiang in November 2018.
The mayor visited Jinjiang for the sister city signing agreement. Among the areas of cooperation agreed between the two parties are trade and commerce, tourism, science and technology, education, and sports.
“Usually, the manufacturing and assembling industry – the big impact would be employment opportunities for Davao. That means from construction phase all the way to operations, it needs huge manpower requirements in terms of manufacturing industry,” Ortonio said.
The investment chief said both sides will also include in the study next year the possible location of the plant.
He added potential sites for manufacturing are in the northern part of the city such as Bunawan, Lasang, and Tibungco.
He said he hopes the Filipino-Chinese businessman and the Chinese company will firm up the joint venture since the MOA signed in November was for both sides to start the exploratory stage.
“The memorandum of agreement is for them to study first. It doesn’t mean it’s okay already, meaning there is an interest, meaning they would scout for an area if there are any potential sites,” he said.
Light manufacturing and assembly is one of the preferred investment areas of the city. It also includes agri-business; tourism and recreational facilities; property development; health and wellness, educational and sports facilities; environment protection on green projects; information and communications technology; generation of new sources of energy; transportation and infrastructure; and public-private partnership projects.
He said the city government prefers light manufacturing only “because of the directive of the city government not to destroy the environment.”
Ortonio said Jinjiang is also known for garment manufacturing and they hope to get investments in that area.
He admitted the limitation of the city is the lack of eco zones as most of the industry and manufacturing companies would like to be located in those areas.
He said the land requirement of the manufacturing sector is at least 25 hectares. (Antonio L. Colina IV/MindaNews)