AFAB Budget Approval at the Senate Committee Level
The Senate Committee on Finance – Subcommittee F approved the requested budget of the Authority of the Freeport Area of Bataan (AFAB) to be covered under the proposed 2019 General Appropriations Act (GAA) in a Senate committee hearing last 04 September 2018.
At the outset, Finance Subcommittee Chairperson Joseph Victor Ejercito, noted that according to latest records, Bataan has the lowest poverty incidence in the Philippines; and this feat could be attributed to AFAB’s exemplary operational performance. He commended AFAB’s success on increase in investments, improvement in business facilitation systems and surge in employment generation since 2010.
During the deliberations, AFAB Chairman and Administrator Emmanuel D. Pineda identified their priority projects which include the expansion and building of additional housing, power supply system, and standard factory buildings with corresponding utilities.
“We identified the major needs to sustain the progress of the Freeport of Bataan, we have called it [action agenda] by the acronym “SOFT HEART” (Socially relevant, Operationally viable, Financially feasible, Technologically advanced, Housing, Expansion areas, Accessibility, Renewable energy and Transportation)”, Chairman Pineda said.
He added that AFAB is capitalizing on the opportunity that many investors want to relocate from China to Bataan and expects the expansion of luxury bags manufacturers in the Freeport.
Sen. Ejercito has approved the proposed budget of AFAB and endorsed it for plenary discussion in the next few weeks.
“I’d like to likewise thank the Freeport Area of Bataan for being a success story hopefully to [inspire] other freeport zones in the country”, he concluded.