MARIVELES, Bataan – The Authority of the Freeport Area of Bataan has announced the approval of the application of Petron Corp. as one of the registered enterprises of the Freeport Area of Bataan here.
AFAB information officer Hazel Keith Ellorin said Petron located inside the Petron Bataan Refinery complex in Limay town was declared as the 12th FAB expansion area outside of the town.
Some of the expansion areas are in the towns of Dinalupihan, Abucay and Pilar, and Balanga City.
Petron is a 238-hectare integrated crude oil refinery and petrochemical complex engaged in processing a full range of petroleum products including gasoline, diesel, liquefied petroleum gas, jet fuel, kerosene, and petrochemicals in Barangay Lamao, Limay.
“Petron being a FAB-registered enterprise is to help ensure the continued economic development and promote a reinvigorated investment environment in the municipality of Limay and the whole province of Bataan,” Ellorin said.
She said Petron is committed to make an additional investment of P3 billion within five years that can create more jobs for the constituents of Limay and nearby municipalities.
“The AFAB Board duly recognized the merits of the application. With this registration, Petron would be more competitive and in a better position to sustain its operation to supply fuel for the nation,” AFAB senior information officer Karen Padaoan said.
Padaoan said paying billions of taxes and spending over P500 million for its corporate social responsibility programs are among Petron’s major contributions to nation-building and Bataan’s economic growth.
AFAB administrator Emmanuel Pineda said pursuant to Section 2 of RA 11453 or “An Act Further Strengthening the Powers and Functions of the Authority of the Freeport Area of Bataan”, the AFAB, with the LGU and the approval of the AFAB Board in accordance with existing laws and local ordinances, has the power to establish special economic zones within the province of Bataan.
Limay municipality has endorsed the registration of Petron as FAB enterprise after workers and management separately approached mayor Nelson David and vice mayor Richie David for help to prevent the impending closure of the biggest and only remaining oil refinery in the country.
The vice mayor, in an earlier interview, said the two groups both have one agenda – how to save the refinery – for its closure would mean not only job dislocation but affect not only the economy of Limay and Bataan but that of the country.
He said Petron has some problems with taxation coupled with the prolonged decline in demand for diesel fuel due to the continuing effect of the pandemic that further worsened the refinery’s financial woes.