PEZA Approves 131 Developer Projects for IT Parks and IT Centers
The Philippine Economic Zone Authority (PEZA) recently approved a total of 131 Information Technology (IT) Parks and IT Centers developer projects all located in Metro Manila and with investments worth P160 billion. As of this writing, only half of the approved IT developer projects may contend for PEZA accreditation since most office spaces were leased out to online gaming operators.
According to PEZA Director-General Charito B. Plaza, most applicants registered after the government passed Malacañang Administrative Order (AO) No. 18, also known as the “Accelerating rural progress through robust development of special economic zones in the countryside.” The measure aims to suspend the application for economic zones in Metro Manila in to prioritize economic growth in the countryside.
The country currently has a total of 278 IT parks and centers. 167 of these infrastructures are in Metro Manila. Other cities with IT enterprises such as Makati, Quezon City, and Pasig.
Developer Projects Will Still Receive Perks from PEZA
While PEZA approved the applications for 121 IT centers and 10 IT parks from 2015 up to June 2019; the IT developer projects still require an endorsement to the Malacañang to officially proclaim the infrastructures as Special Economic Zones (SEZ).
Regardless of the approval of these IT developer projects in Metro Manila as SEZs, they will no longer receive the tax incentives provided by the investment promotion agency. However, locators from the IT-Business Process Management sector (IT-BPM) utilize the perks offered by PEZA. They emphasized these property developers may have earned from the lease of their office spaces without the need to register for with PEZA as an ecozone.
IT parks and centers affected by the issuance of AO 18 can look for alternate sites outside Metro Manila within 3 months to disperse economic growth in the Philippines’ countryside. PEZA also requested to exclude the cities of Caloocan, Las Piñas, Malabon, Manila, Marikina, Pateros, and Valenzuela from the measure since some of them do not have IT parks or centers yet.