OCCIDENTAL Mindoro Rep. Josephine “Nene” Y. Ramirez-Sato is seeking to establish a Special Economic and Freeport Zone in the towns of San Jose and Magsaysay in the province of Occidental Mindoro.
A former governor of Occidental Mindoro, Sato said the establishment of the Occidental Mindoro Special Economic and Freeport Zone through a bill she filed in the House of Representatives on October 2 is anchored on promoting the countryside as alternative areas for investments.
“I believe the establishment of the Special Economic and Freeport Zone in San Jose will alleviate and improve the economic condition of Occidental Mindoro and other nearby provinces,” said Sato.
Occidental Mindoro belongs to the MIMAROPA Region -- which includes Oriental Mindoro, Marinduque, Romblon, and Palawan.
“Through the Special Economic and Freeport Zone, residents will be assured of local employment opportunities which will hasten the economic growth not only in the area but in the nearby provinces as well,” said Sato.
The Special Economic and Freeport Zone the lady solon sought to establish is conceptualized as a self-sustaining industrial, commercial and investment center that will encourage economic growth and accelerate employment generation in the province.
“It envisions such economic zone to be operated as a separate customs territory that will provide incentives to ensure free flow and movement of goods and commodities within the area and their expression there from. Likewise, it shall provide tax-based incentives for businesses operating within its premises,” she added.
Sato is seeking an initial capitalization of P2 billion for the proposed Occidental Mindoro Special Economic Zone and Freeport Authority.
Aside from promoting investment, the OMSEZA is also mandated “to protect, preserve, maintain and develop the virgin forests, beaches, coral and coral reefs within the Zone.”
As another safeguard measure, the virgin forest within the Special Economic and Freeport Zone will be proclaimed as a National Park and will be covered by the permanent total log ban.