APARRI, Cagayan: A $2-billion “Smart City” on Fuga Island here will be constructed under a memorandum of understanding between the Cagayan Economic Zone Authority (CEZA) and the Xiamen-based Fong Zhi Enterprise Corp. (FZEC).
Secretary Raul Lambino, CEZA administrator and chief executive officer, said the project would be patterned after the firm’s ongoing mega-infrastructure project in Fujian province in China.
The investment is part of $3.9 worth of commitment investments made at the sidelines of the recently concluded 2nd Belt and Road Initiative Forum in Beijing.
Fuga Island, located north of Luzon, is part of the Babuyan archipelago, the second-northernmost island group of the Philippines, with an area of 100 square kilometers and a population of more than 2,000.
Along with the neighboring islets of Barit and Mabag, the island constitutes one of the 42 barangay (villages) of this town.
It is the only island of the Babuyan archipelago under the jurisdiction of a mainland municipality, while the rest of the islands form the town of Calayan.
“The company would also set up an agricultural breeding center and soil improvement project, build medical schools, promote culture and tourism and establish a high-tech industrial park,” Lambino said.
He added that a separate strategic cooperation agreement was signed between FZEC with Isla Fuga Resort Inc., owner of Fuga Island that boasts of pristine white sand beaches, unspoiled flora and fauna, and warm sea water.
Lambino also signed seven memoranda of understanding and two letters of intent with Chinese companies, which included the Shanghai Jucheng Group, Pai Hao Investment, Shenzhen Dawah Real Estates, China Zhejiang Guannan Group, Golden Millennial Quickpay and Yatai International Holdings.
“These [projects] are mostly for infrastructure in Sta. Ana town that we hope would propel the development of the Cagayan Special Economic Zone and Freeport,” he said.
The projects, according to Lambino, include the development of an integrated resort and global entertainment projects, a world-class golf course and other leisure and shopping facilities, township and manufacturing plant for lithium batteries for sustainable energy production, and the expansion of the Lal-lo International Airport for wide-bodied aircraft.
Other projects include the establishment of marina, watersports training center and private villas and “green” textile production hub for global distribution, among others.