Update investment code for more revenues – GenSan mayor

GENERAL SANTOS CITY (MindaNews/25 February) — The city government is pushing for the revision and updating of the city’s investment code in a bid to enhance further the local government’s revenue generation initiatives.

City Mayor Ronnel Rivera said Tuesday he has issued Executive Order 206 to facilitate the review and amendment within this year of the city’s Investment Code of 2004, which last underwent some minor revisions in 2010.

He said the move will mainly focus on the updating of some provisions of the code to complement with the city’s current socio-economic condition and the continuing developments in the area.

The mayor said the amendment of the code was among the strategies earlier adopted by the local government to achieve its goal of increasing local revenues this year by around P200 million.

He noted that for this year, the city government has projected an income of around P300 million from local taxes and P900 million from its Internal Revenue Allotment share.

“We’re continually finding additional resources so we can invest on more sustainable projects that would reinforce the growth of the city’s economy,” Rivera said.

In amending the investment code, the mayor said the local government will link up with the city’s business sector, specifically the General Santos City Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Inc.

He said they also sought the business chamber’s help in the creation of the city’s investment promotion plan, investment promotion center and business promotion center.

Rivera said these initiatives are aimed to further boost the city’s role as the business and trade hub of Region 12 and maximize the capacity of the city to consolidate future investment ventures.

The mayor initiated last year a comprehensive study on the city’s trade and investment policies in a bid to sustain the area’s economic growth.

It covered a review of the city’s ordinances and other local regulations involving business, investments and taxation.

The city government, through the City Economic Management and Cooperative Development Office had also commissioned a technical working group (TWG) composed of representatives of various sectors to draw up changes that would make the investment code more responsive to the present business environment.

Among the initial revisions recommended by the TWG was the incorporation of an investment priority plan that will contain the city’s approved investment priority areas, guidelines and implementing rules and regulations.

It pushed for the rationalization of business or investment application procedures and improve the responsiveness of the code to rapidly changing investment areas.

The TWG recommended the removal of the minimum capitalization requirement to allow micro, small, and medium enterprises avail of and benefit from investment incentives offered by the local government.

It set the inclusion of locational restrictions to certain investment areas to encourage the dispersal of industries to more rural barangays, decongest highly urbanized areas and expand the city’s development areas. (MindaNews)