A Brief History in Time…
In 1991 Mt. Pinatubo erupted. Central Luzon was devastated, the two biggest American Military Facilities outside the U.S. mainland, namely Subic Bay Naval Base and Clark Air Base, were totally ruined. Along with that, thousands of FIlipinos who worked there are now jobless. No salary no money no trade no food. And then the Americans left the bases. Double whammy, double jeopardy, twice the sorrow, twice the lost. And the dominoes goes on and on and on. Then…
In March 1992 BCDA was created with a mandate to transform former US military bases into alternative productive civilian use, it is committed to deliver to the modernization of the Armed Forces of the Philippines, to impact regional synergy and socio-development, and to generate economic opportunities for all arising from gains in its special economic zones1. And this begets the Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority (SBMA) and Clark Development Corporation (CDC).
Now SBMA is in charge of transforming the former U.S. Naval Base into a self-sustaining tourism, industrial, commercial, financial, and investment center to generate employment opportunities2. Now CDC is tasked to do the same to Clark Air Base which was renamed Clark Special Economic Zone (CSEZ). A little while later, in 2007, CSEZ was renamed Clark Freeport Zone, turning Clark into a freeport entitles investors to the same tax-free and other duty-free privileges enjoyed by their counterparts at the Subic Bay Freeport.
Are you seeing this now? SBMA and CDC both have the same function. The obvious conclusion is this SBMA IS TO SUBIC BAY FREEPORT ZONE AS CDC IS TO CLARK FREEPORT ZONE. Get….
SBMA:SBFZ = CDC:CFZ
Let me confuse you to make this clearer….
SBMA:CFZ = CDC:SBFZ
Get it now?
It’s just a matter of nomenclature. You could name any entity anything you want. You could create a company called Mazinger Z Management Authority or Voltes V Development Corporation if you want to. You can make SBMA manage the Clark Freeport Zone and CDC to manage the Subic Bay Freeport Zone. The functions are still the same. No matter how it was organize. By corporate laws or otherwise. The function, the function, the function. And the cock crowed.
And really I don’t know how the Governance Commission for GOCC (GCG) works but it surely did err in categorizing CDC as under COMMERCIAL, TRADE AND TOURISM GOCC when its function is to manage a Freeport Zone. Just because that its name doesn’t ends in Authority, it doesn’t mean that it doesn’t engage in Freeport function. Again that word, function. And to those that may insist that it should be renamed to include the Authority thing, look at this...
Of those listed on the Economic Zone Authorities there is this one that clearly doesn’t have the Authority dangling it pops out just by scanning the sub-list, it says Freeport Services Corporation. Now what gives, mah man… FSC is a subsidiary of SBMA and provides manpower and allied services needs of the Freeport (SBMA) and its locators. In CDC we also have something like that, and it is called Customer Services Department. Again function, a department that has the same function as the Freeport Services Corporation.
Perhaps GCG just got confused in classifying CDC as a commercial, trade and tourism agency and not as a Freeport Authority. I hope that this get corrected.
And look at this,
Ehem, Mr. Cesar Villanueva was once a Board Chairman of CDC, he is privy of this function of CDC thing.
Ehem, what did WE DO?
This is getting too long, I haven’t even expound on the title yet. The second part will elaborate more, but then I have to abruptly…
End of Part One