BAGUIO CITY – Philippine Economic Zone Authority (PEZA) Officer-in-Charge Tereso Panga and Baguio City Mayor Benjamin Magalong have signed an Integrity Pledge last March 04, 2023, affirming commitment to uphold high ethical standards and transparent business practices.
The signing ceremony, held at the PEZA office in Baguio City, marks a significant step towards promoting a culture of integrity and accountability in the country’s economic zones. Joining the Baguio City Mayor and PEZA OIC were PEZA Deputy Director General for Operations Vivian S. Santos, Deputy Director General for Finance and Administration Aleem Siddiqui M. Guiapal and Baguio City Economic Zone Administrator Emmanuel D. Cortero.
Prior to the signing, the PEZA officials paid a courtesy call to the Mayor at his office at the Baguio City Hall. While exchanging ideas on good governance, Mayor Magalong shared his campaign to encourage government officials to shun temptations of corruption and promote transparency in government dealings.
“This movement of good governance should spread like virus and infect the whole of government apparatus,” said Mayor Magalong while distributing stickers inscribed with “Good Governance Beyond Politics” to PEZA officials. The Mayor also shared the aspiration of Baguio to become the “first smart city” in the country.
The PEZA OIC informed the Mayor that PEZA upholds and shares the same ideals of good governance in the advent of digital economy. Having risen from the ranks, OIC Tereso Panga saw PEZA transform from a fledgling bureau in the late 1990s to an economic powerhouse that it is today, contributing to the economic growth by creating a brand of ease of doing business within PEZA ecozones.
The Mayor was elated that PEZA shared the same ideals, and together with the PEZA OIC decided to cement both agencies’ shared commitment to promote good governance, honesty, utmost service and ethical business practices. “This sends a strong message that corruption has no place in the country’s economic zones and that both the public and private sectors must work together to uphold the highest standards of integrity and accountability,” said the PEZA OIC.
The PEZA OIC further said, “As with the aim of Baguio City to be a “smart city”, PEZA likewise has implemented pioneering programs and initiatives to transform public and private economic zones into “green ecozones”. PEZA has registered embedded renewable energy projects, thereby reducing carbon footprints in ecozones for a sustainable development. Towards a circular economy, PEZA has registered waste to energy projects. And for further ease in doing business, we will roll out the completion of automation projects within months, together with the command center not only for purposes of monitoring the flow of goods to and from ecozone to curb smuggling, but as well as integrating the same with DICT programs for emergency response, disaster resiliency and business continuity plan.”
Back in 2012, During the time of former PEZA Director General Lilia B. De Lima, the Integrity Pledge (a Makati Business Club led integrity initiative project) was etched between PEZA and the European Chamber of Commerce of the Philippines (ECCP) to support campaign against corruption.
In that ceremony, the former PEZA DG Lilia De Lima highlighted PEZA ecozones as prime models on how to handle investors in the country.