Belmonte sees Quezon City as ‘preferred destination for business’

Published July 20, 2019, 12:03 PM

by Dr. Eduardo Gonzales

By Chito Chavez

Quezon City Mayor Joy Belmonte has started to map out plans to turn the city to a preferred destination for business that will create more fresh jobs opportunities for local residents during her term.

Quezon City Mayor-elect Joy Belmonte (FACEBOOK / MANILA BULLETIN)
Quezon City Mayor Joy Belmonte

In her 14-point executive agenda, Belmonte has committed to ease the process of registering and establishing new businesses and automate the process of acquiring permits and payments of fees and taxes.

To entice businesses to make Quezon City their ideal destination, Belmonte vowed to promote transparency by publishing the city’s tax rates and making the process of assessments transparent.

“We will aim to issue new permits for low-risk businesses in one to two days and for high-risk businesses within a week,” Belmonte assured.

Belmonte said measures have been done to make the city’s business firms comprehend exactly how “we compute their fees and taxes’’.

With this, Belmonte said “they will no longer fear hidden charges and arbitrary exactions”.

In terms of job creation across more businesses, Belmonte plans to introduce incentives for under-developed business sectors, such as tourism and arts and culture, encourage and support small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs).

In particular, Belmonte said agri-tourism, eco-tourism, heritage tourism, culinary tourism and medical tourism may generate additional employment for Quezon City residents.

Also, Belmonte seeks to develop more growth hubs in different parts of the cities.

Belmonte under the plan hopes to undertake the development of the Vertis North area into a new central business district while the environs of ABS-CBN and GMA-7 could turn into a vibrant media and entertainment hub.

“From the La Mesa dam area, a thriving eco-tourist zone could emerge. We will stimulate and sustain the growth of these hubs. We will bring prosperity to more people,” Belmonte said.

In addition to human and social services and economic development, also included in Belmonte’s 14-point agenda are plans and programs for environment and climate change, infrastructure and institutional development.

Part of Belmonte’s plan is to turn Quezon City into a livable, green and sustainable city, with improved waste disposal system, clean streets and sidewalks and better parks and reservations.

Belmonte is also committed to build infrastructure that would be truly essential, respond to the needs of the people and avoid spending public funds on projects that would serve the interests of crooked contractors and their cronies.

In terms of institutional development, Belmonte hopes to make the Quezon City local government a model of good governance by professionalizing its workforce and listening to the people’s voice to determine their needs.

“We will ensure transparency, fiscal prudence and accountability. We will clean up our books through integrated sharing of financial data,” said Belmonte.

To recall, Belmonte has ordered the establishment of an Internal Audit Office to serve as watchdog when it comes to the city’s finances.