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Clark free port seeks bidders for tourism, residential area

Posted on 11:12 PM, June 21, 2010 [ BusinessWorld Online ]

THE STATE agency in charge of the Clark free port in Pampanga is bidding out the lease agreement covering a roughly two-hectare lot for tourism or residential developments.
One firm has expressed interest in submitting a proposal, the deadline for which is on Friday, an official said.
The 17,190-square-meter raw land sits along the free port zone’s Chico Street near the Redwood Villas development, a notice on the Clark Development Corp. (CDC) Web site showed.
Firms operating inside the free port can apply for income tax holidays and will pay only a 5% tax on gross income after the exemption expires. Free port locators are also qualified for other incentives such as duty-free importation of capital equipment and the employment of foreign nationals.
The notice set the floor price for the 25-year lease at $0.40 per square meter per month or an annual lease of $82,512 for the entire property. This, however, is subject to a 10% escalation starting on the fourth year and every three years thereafter. Bid proposals are due on June 25.
“Only one [has submitted a letter of intent],” Ernesto S. Gorospe, chairman of the CDC Special Bids and Awards Committee, said in a text message yesterday, without elaborating.
The lot was put on the auction bloc after the current locator -- Asialuxe Philippines, Inc. -- terminated its lease contract, a CDC staffer who declined to be identified said.
Asialuxe Philippines had proposed a tourism estate for the land but left it undeveloped, the staffer said.
The notice went on to state that the winning bidder will also have to turn over a percentage of gross revenues.
“But this will not form part of the evaluation criteria,” it stated.
Last year, the CDC auctioned the lease for a 25-hectare government-owned property formerly occupied by the Ramos’ administration’s Expo Pilipino theme park.
It was awarded to the Australian International Training and Management Group, which is putting up a school that will offer courses in construction, auto mechanical, and electrical services as well as plumbing and tourism.
The CDC also sought counterproposals to a South Korean consortium’s bid to manage the Mimosa Leisure Estate, a casino-resort, last December, under a “Swiss Challenge.”
The unsolicited bid came from Hanwool I&D, a joint venture among a resort developer, a leading pharmaceutical firm, and a venture capitalist. The 215-hectare property has long been on the auction block after three failed attempts to sell it since 2003. In 2008, CDC voided a contract with bid winner Waterfront Philippines, Inc. when the firm, unable to secure a casino operation license, did not pay on time. -- Jessica Anne D. Hermosa

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