Top officials and members of the Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry (PCCI) gathered for the very first time in Ilocos Norte on July 8-10 to participate in the 24th North Luzon Area Business Conference (NLABC).
Businessman Ricardo Tolentino, President of PCCI – Ilocos Norte Chapter said that hosting the conference is a great opportunity to emphasize the vibrant business and investment environment in the province.
“We hope that the output of this conference will escalate into policy reform and better economic standing (of the area),” added Tolentino.
Meanwhile, Governor Imee R. Marcos hosted a dinner and fellowship night for the delegates held at the Malacañang of the North in Paoay, Ilocos Norte on July 9 and sought for the guidance of the organization in improving the investment sector in the province.
“What you do in PCCI is what drives the economy and what we need here. In Ilocos Norte, we are fully aware that 9 out of 10 jobs are created not by the government but by the private sector,” said Governor Marcos.
She added that it is then the role of the government to “enable, enhance and help the businessmen to do their best work, to establish the most stable and flourishing businesses and to profit not only for the owners but for the benefit of the community.”
Delegates to the conference came from the Ilocos Region, Cagayan Valley, Cordillera Administrative Region and some provinces in Central Luzon.
“Holding the conference here in Ilocos Norte for the very first time is visionary as the economic prospect of the province is bright,” noted PCCI National Chairman Atty. Miguel Varela.
As Ilocos Norte is a gateway to the largest markets in the world like China, Taiwan, Japan and Korea, Governor Marcos highlighted the recent achievements and various efforts like the Task Force Trabaho of the provincial government to advance and expand the business and investment sector in the province.
PCCI Northern Luzon Assistant Vice President Engr. Alfonso T. Lao noted that the province is a very strategic area as “you have air and sea ports which are very suitable for a lot of national and international businesses to grow and for tourists to come…this would generate more jobs in the province.”
“Through our efforts, we are now being dominated by big players in the BPO industry with investments coming from Accenture and EGS – our prime job generators. We encourage you to help us by bringing more opportunities,” said Governor Marcos.
The annual area business conference is a regular activity of the PCCI every July to gather its officers and members to formulate action plans that would improve the business and investment scenarios in strategic areas and to strengthen partnerships between the government and private sector.
Business and investment issues and concerns raised at the NLABC will be addressed at the Philippines Business Conference in October.—(John Michael Mugas, PGIN-CMO)