CLARK FREEPORT–Governor Susan Yap of Tarlac province has called for clear policies that should cover companies in the Philippine Offshore Gaming Operations [POGOs] in the country.
“What does it benefit us?,” Yap said when asked for her comments on having POGOs.
She was guest at the Balitaan media forum here by the Capampangan in Media Inc. [CAMI], in cooperation with Clark Development Corporation [CDC].
The governor, who is seeking her third term unopposed, said that there has to be clear rules and regulations in allowing the POGOS to operate, particularly in taxation.
“Taxation is not clear yet. Once it is cleared and income for government (is assured) then it is fine,” Yap said.
She said that under current rules, only the lessor stands to benefit in allowing the multi-billion peso industry to operate.
She also called for well-defined rules on employment where locals must always be considered.
“What job generation does it have? Ninety percent of [their] employees are not Filipinos,” the governor added.
Better Socio-Economic Endeavors
Making good her vision, Yap likewise pushed for the improvement of the province’s socio-economic standing by moving from traditional agriculture-based source of income to high value products and industries.
In the same Balitaan media forum, Yap, has developed the province into a more vibrant economy, venturing into more value added goods, services and livelihood opportunities.
Yap said that she has implemented programs that call for planting, harvest, trade and even exports of high value crops. She was joined by Provincial Information Officer Arvin Cabalu and Tarlac Investment and Trade Officer Frances Camacho during the forum.
“We are developing the other crops like sweet potato, squash but our biggest export is still okra,” Yap said.
The governor said that she still wants a balance between agriculture and industrialization. Two of its 17 municipalities are known to produce power from solar farms. Concepcion and La Paz a have unique set-up where panels are arranged in a way that can enable farmers to plant crops.
“During the pandemic, we did not scramble for food unlike in Metro Manila. We were calm,” she said.
The province is also slowly developing bird watching as one of its tourist attractions.
Yap said that migratory birds, usually known of Candaba, Pampanga, have started to flock Canarem Lake in Victoria town.
“We are moving towards the protection of the bird habitat and making it a preserved area,” Yap said.