N. Samar pilots ‘green lane’ for big investments

N. Samar pilots ‘green lane’ for big investments

/ 04:45 AM April 22, 2024

FAST PROCESSING Northern Samar prepares to fast-track the processing of permits and approvals for big-ticket, ecology- friendly projects through the country’s first “green lane,” to be set up at the capitol. —CIRILO ALBERT HICBAN/CONTRIBUTOR

FAST PROCESSING Northern Samar prepares to fast-track the processing of permits and approvals for big-ticket, ecology-friendly projects through the country’s first “green lane,” to be set up at the capitol. CIRILO ALBERT HICBAN/CONTRIBUTOR

TACLOBAN CITY, LEYTE, Philippines — Northern Samar has established a “green lane” that will cut red tape for big-ticket, ecology-friendly investments, such as those involving renewable energy, the first local government unit (LGU) in the country to do so.

Ernesto delos Reyes Jr., director of the Board of Investments (BOI), said having a green lane may prove to be a game changer for Northern Samar, one of the poorest provinces in the country with a poverty incidence of around 26 percent.


“We are glad that the province has established its own green lane for strategic investments,” he said in an interview on Wednesday.


READ: Northern Samar introduces perks to attract more investors

The creation of green lanes for strategic investment was mandated under Executive Order No. 18 issued by President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. on February 23, 2023.

The order defines strategic investments as those that are aligned with the Philippine Development Plan (PDP) or any similar national development plan and can be characterized by significant capital or consequential economic impact.

President Marcos signed EO 14 in January 2023, approving and adopting the PDP 2023-2028, a six-year comprehensive development strategy of the Marcos administration that laid out the country’s road map to recover from the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.

It included plans to accelerate the country’s digital transformation, connectivity and linkages between the agricultural and industrial sectors with the services sector; intensify public-private partnerships for eco-friendly investments; and enhance the role of LGUs as partners in development, according to a report in February by the state-run Philippine News Agency.

Strategic location

Delos Reyes said the provincial government of Northern Samar should take advantage of its strategic location as the gateway of Eastern Visayas to the rest of the country, its abundant natural resources, and its young and skilled working population.


The establishment of a green lane in Northern Samar was contained in EO 24 signed by Gov. Edwin Ongchuan on Jan. 12, with the provincial economic development and investment promotions office as the lead agency.

The green lane at the capitol will help fast-track the process of securing all the needed permits and documents by potential investors.

For simple transactions, actions could be finished within three working days; seven working days for complex transactions; and 20 working days for those involving highly technical transactions.


Delos Reyes said the BOI would monitor if the period of transactions would not be violated, saying a complaint could be filed at the Anti-Red Tape Authority, which is under the Office of the President.

If the program will work in Northern Samar, Delos Reyes said he would request the Department of the Interior and Local Government to direct all local governments in the country to have their own green lane for strategic investments.

Ongchuan said he is optimistic that the creation of a green lane would lead to the coming in of big investors to the province.

Ongchuan cited the ongoing development work of an onshore wind project by Aboitiz Renewables Inc. and Vena Energy in San Isidro town, which has employed about 300 locals.

Another big-ticket investment coming to the province is the offshore wind power project by the Copenhagen Infrastructure Partners, with an initial investment of P108 billion.

A tidal power facility will also be built in the town of Capul by Energies PH Inc.

“The advantage here is, of course, this could help generate employment among the locals,” he said.

Jan Allen Berbon, head of the provincial economic development and investment promotions office, said they are more interested in having an easy and transparent business climate.

Your subscription could not be saved. Please try again.
Your subscription has been successful.

Subscribe to our daily newsletter

By providing an email address. I agree to the Terms of Use and acknowledge that I have read the Privacy Policy.

“We want to fast-track securing the [needed] permit which we can provide through this green lane or one-stop shop,” he said.

TAGS: BOI, EO No. 18, green lane, Northern Samar

© Copyright 1997-2024 INQUIRER.net | All Rights Reserved

We use cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. By continuing, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. To find out more, please click this link.