Palawan, Sabah business groups ink investment pact

The business communities of Palawan and Sabah, Malaysia recently signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) for investment facilitation and promotion activities under the Brunei, Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines-East ASEAN Growth Area (BIMP-EAGA).

The MOU was signed between representatives of the Kudat Chinese Chamber of Commerce (KCCC) chairman Datuk Pak Chee Eng, Puerto Princesa City Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Inc. (PPCCCI) president Atty. Joel Tan and Palawan Economic Development Council  (PEDCO) president Engr. Benedicto Guaño Jr. on November 6.

Dr. Myrna Lacanilao, officer-in-charge of the Provincial Economic Enterprise and Development Office (PEEDO), who witnessed the event said the MOU is aimed to a strong partnership among the business communities through the conduct of investment awareness activities and the facilitation of inquiries of Palawan’s and Sabah’s policies, programs, and other concerns.

She said the MOU “is a welcome development as it is an undertaking that further complements the initiatives of both the province and the Malaysian state to promote them as investment destinations of choice.”

Before the signing, Mindanao Development Authority (MinDA) development manager Eamarie Gilayo said with the MOU, the province and the state of Sabah can now also depend on the business groups to help in the common growth of their investment climates under the subregional economic cooperation initiative in Southeast Asia.

“It is in the hands of the private sector – the ones whom we consider as the engine of growth in terms of increasing chain tourism and investments in our areas,” Gilayo said.

Bobbie Chen Kah Khing, Sabah Minister for Trade and Industry (SMTI) also witnessed the signing with Vice Governor Dennis Socrates, said part of the objective of the MOU is to strengthen the sea link between Palawan and Sabah through the Buliluyan Port in Bataraza

Bobbie Chen Kah Khing said the session is a part of the Kudat, Malaysia to Palawan route through the Buliluyan port in Bataraza which aims to help in the economic development of both areas.

“Our objective is to establish the business link for the business sector on both sides with the soon-to-be-launched RORO (roll on, roll off) ferry service between Palawan and Kudat, Sabah. It will further strengthen the trade connection of both sides,” Kah Khing said.

Recently, state special tasks minister Datuk Teo Chee Kan expressed confidence that the Kudat-Palawan RORO ferry link will bring not only trade opportunities but also create job prospects for residents of the two areas.

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