That according to Mayor Edgardo D. Pamintuan, sums up all that he knows of the project set to be undertaken by Singaporean firm Capilion Corporate Pte Ltd. near the main entrance to the Clark Freeport Zone.
“[Clark Development Corp. President-CEO] Art Tugade asked me sometime ago how much Angeles is getting from SM Clark in taxes and I told him somewhere between P200 million to P250 million,” Pamintuan said during last Friday’s breakfast forum with media at the Museo ning Angeles.
“Without mentioning the nature of the business, its location, or even the name of the locator, Art told me that the city would get double that paid by SM Clark in taxes,” Pamintuan added.
The P7-billion Capilion project dubbed “Clark Green Frontier” is a mixed-use facility for business process outsourcing, residential and commercial enterprises to be located between the M.A. Roxas Avenue, the freeport’s main thoroughfare, and Don Juico Avenue along the south perimeter fence of the Freeport.
Apprised of the concerns of local businessmen on the possible adverse effects of the Capilion project to their trade, as well as the sangguniang panlungsod resolution expressing “vehement opposition” to the project, Pamintuan said he would move to convene the Metro Clark Advisory Council which he co-chairs with Tugade to address all issues raised in connection with the project.
“While we welcome the revenues, we cannot disregard the possible social and economic costs and the environmental impact the project will cause upon the city and our constituency,” Pamintuan said as the rationale for his call for the MCAC meeting.
City Council Resolution No. 7184, S-2015, sponsored by Councilor Max Sangil, stated that “it has been a matter of policy that no structures or edifices will be built or established in the aforesaid area which is significant as a buffer zone since the American time.”
Adding: “the structures will disturb the aesthetic structure of the area… a great concern with regard to traffic gridlock may occur in case of business establishments be constructed in the said area.”
And further cited “certain environmental issues with regard to the construction of those structures which may result to the cutting of aged old trees.”
Local environmental groups have also expressed their opposition to the Capillion project due to “the impending massacre of scores of mature trees” mostly mahogany and acacia at the project site.
For the advocacy group Pinoy Gumising Ka Movement, the Capilion project is “but the latest in the long list of violations of Republic Act 7227 (Bases Conversion Development Law) by the CDC.”
“Instead of the Clark Freeport spurring parallel development for its contiguous communities as mandated by RA 7227, the CDC is depriving them of that development,” said PGKM Chairman Ruperto Cruz.
Cruz said the Capilion project would enjoy “privileged status as Clark locator in an uneven playing field against the local businesses.”
Cruz at the same time sees “sabotage” in locating Capilion right at the very entrance of the Clark Freeport.
“This is part of the conspiracy to sabotage the full development of the Clark airport as premier international gateway.
CDC is constricting the main road to the airport, thereby depriving it of open accessibility when the time comes for Clark’s expansion,” Cruz said.