MANILA – The Makati City Council has endorsed the grant of IT zone status to four buildings in the country’s premier financial district.

The four buildings include two by Century Properties Group Inc. The third is a development of Ayala Land Inc, while the fourth is the country’s first IT-ready high-rise building developed by Judith Duavit Vasquez, daughter of a key shareholder of GMA Network Inc.

The two Century Properties buildings — the Century Spire and the Forbes Media Tower — have yet to rise at the company’s Century City along Kalayaan Avenue, whereas the lone ALI building — the McKinley Exchange Corporate Center — will rise at the corner of Edsa and McKinley Road later this year.

The fourth building — The Peak Tower — is the first IT-ready high-rise building in the country. Having opened for business in Salcedo Village in 1995, 45-storeys tall The Peak Tower is already home to a number of business process outsourcing (BPO) companies.

The endorsement would allow the owners of the four buildings to enjoy tax and other perks provided by state-run Philippine Economic Zone Authority (PEZA). These include exemption from local government fees and taxes, duty-free importation of equipment and exemption from the expanded value-added tax.

To gain the Makati City Council’s endorsement, applicants as well as their tenants or locators commit to provide the city government every three months with a list of their manpower requirements and criteria for selection, and to hire qualified city residents. They shall also provide a list of training centers or schools where disqualified candidates can be sent for training and subsequently be reconsidered for employment.

“As we support our investors by providing them a healthy business environment, we also promote the welfare of our primary stakeholders, the citizens of Makati, by helping in the creation of more job opportunities,” Makati Mayor Jejomar Erwin S. Binay said.

“We have been doing everything within our power and resources to adequately prepare the youth of Makati for the challenges of rapid globalization. Today, even those from the poorest of families are able to freely access our modern school facilities in every barangay, and get quality education that would empower them to achieve their potential,” he said.

Makati City is host to 39 PEZA-accredited IT zones, including the RCBC Plaza, Philamlife IT Tower, Insular Life Makati Building, Zuellig Building, Makati Stock Exchange, Ayala Tower One, Convergys IT Building, and PBCom Tower, among others.

Source: Interaksyon | August 3, 2014