In what officials describe as a grandiose tourism master plan, the Philippine Economic Zone Authority (PEZA) will, in the coming years, be promoting the country’s islands to investors for them to build giant, livable replicas of iconic cities around the world.
“We have 7,500 islands. Most of them are idle,” said PEZA Director General Charito B. Plaza, during her presentation before some 90 participants to an investment conference held, Feb. 12 at Shangri-la Dubai – the first leg of a week-long, three-city roadshow that included Riyadh and Doha.
“We want the Philippines to become an international tourism destination. We will build island cities. We can invite Dubai to put something in one of our islands… icons of the city; as well as Tokyo and Doha,” she said.
Plaza told The Filipino Times the plan was her brainchild. “Yes, ako naka-isip nu’n,” she said when asked after her presentation.
The plan is integrated into PEZA’s goal to industrialize the Philippines by creating economic zones in every province and city, with projects depending on the area’s feasibility, said Plaza.
She said these include an agro-industrial economic zone, agro-forestry, aqua-marine, retirement homes and wellness and naturopathy villages, mineral processing, defense industrial complex, renewable energy industrial parks as well as halal hubs and production zones.
“We are now revolutionizing our programs. We are opening new economic zones. We want to spread investments,” Plaza said.