CEZA Proposes to Expand Economic Zone for Growth
By: Reicelene Joy Ignacio (Manila Times) September 5, 2017
The Cagayan Economic Zone Authority is proposing land expansion and development for the Greater Cagayan Special Economic Zone and Freeport to boost profit-yielding activities in the region.
“CEZA is updating its 20-year old master development plan for the Cagayan Special Economic Zone and Freeport amid strong demand by foreign investors looking for larger tracks of land for development,” CEZA said in a statement on Monday.
All 22 municipalities of Cagayan’s two congressional districts would be included in the proposed expansion and development, CEZA administrator and chief executive officer Raul Lambino said.
He emphasized that including Lallo, where the Cagayan airport is located, would correct a mistake that was overlooked in previous years.
“It is illogical that the airport is located in a town that is not part of the CEZA zone,” Lambino said.
CEZA’s new projects include the development of the 10,000-hectare Fuga Island of Aparri, located at the crossroads of international shipping routes to China, Hongkong, Taipei and Japan.
“Fuga Island would easily lure tourists to its pristine coastline and powdery white sand beaches and excellent dive sites,” Lambino noted.
An Asian company and another from the Middle East are interested in drawing up the master development plan to make the economic Greater Cagayan economic zone and freeport a catalyst for rapid development of Northern Luzon.
Among the infrastructure projects in the front burner of the planners are an inter-modal rail facility and expressway that would link the Cagayan airport to Port Irene in Santa Ana.
CEZA also plans to transform Palaui Island into an eco-tourism paradise, including a 300-hectare smart city and cyber park and a 600-hectare industrial park. Part of the plan is to develop a 30-kilometer white-sand beach with marina, yacht club and fish market, as well as a 72-hole all-weather golf course.
“CEZA used to be associated with offshore gaming and imported used cars. Our new positioning is that it will be a growth center for Northern Luzon, a magnet for investors and a mecca for job seekers,” Lambino said.