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MANILA – A Chinese textile business has targeted the Philippines for a reported US$100m green textile park. China Zhejiang Guannan Group, which is based in Shaoxing in China’s eastern Zhejiang province, this week sent a five-man mission to the Philippines, taking a step closer to finalising terms for the textile park which we understand will be set up at the Cagayan Special Economic Zone and Freeport in Cagayan, which is in the far north of the country.

The Philippines was once a major garment and textile exporter, with exports hitting US$3bn in the country’s heyday. While these figures have dwindled in recent years, the country could be set to be a beneficiary of the ongoing trade war between China and the US, as the former shifts textile production to other locations to avoid US tariffs. Lower labour costs and attractive inward investor sweeteners will also likely help attract more Chinese textile mills to the Philippines, especially if, as expected, trade tensions between China and the US do not thaw.

Officials of the China Zhejiang Guannan Group arrived in Manila this week in the final phase of its preparation before committing to a formal Memorandum of Agreement with the Cagayan Economic Zone Authority, CEZA administrator and CEO Raul Lambino said this week in a statement.

In a press note, Lambino said the Chinese initiative was, “bold, since it will break new ground,” in the Freeport in the area of textile production.

Up to 10,000 hectares of land in Sta. Ana and other neighbouring towns could be developed to accommodate the requirements of the green textile industry park.

Among other structures, the park will build its own power plant, water plant, sewage disposal plant, waste processing plant and other facilities and infrastructure.

The Chinese firm will also invest heavily in the development of townships and real estate following its major projects in Hong Kong, Shanghai and Shaoxing.

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