3 more multi-million businesses enter ARMM
John Unson (The Philippine Star) - September 13, 2014 - 3:23pm

COTABATO CITY, Philippines — The Regional Board of Investments (RBOI) accredited three more private companies to operate multi-million businesses in the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM).

In a statement Friday, the RBOI-ARMM said the regional government recently gave imprimatur to the Darussalam Mining Corporation, the Al Mujahidun Agro-Resources and Development Inc. and the Bangsamoro Oil and Fuels Corporation to proceed with their operations in the region.

Lawyer Ishak Mastura, chairman of RBOI-ARMM, said the capitalists behind the three business entities seem to have confidence in the region's business climate, now improving as a result of the continuing Mindanao peace process.

The autonomous region, which covers Maguindanao and Lanao del Sur, both in mainland Mindanao, and the island provinces of Basilan, Sulu and Tawi-Tawi, generated P3.3 billion-worth of investments in the past 36 months, according to a RBOI-ARMM report last August.

ARMM Gov. Mujiv Hataman said investments upswing can be partly attributed to the reforms his administration introduced into the regional bureaucracy to stamp out corruption and inspire public confidence on the regional government.

"Add to that the absence of major conflicts in the ARMM in the past four years as a dividend of the government and MILF's bilateral peace efforts," Hataman said.

The Darussalam Mining Corporation in the island town of Languyan, Tawi-Tawi posted an initial capital input of P192 million for nickel mining explorations in the province.

The mining activities involve 310 skilled workers, said the RBOI-ARMM.

The Bangsamoro Oil and Fuels Corporation poured in P848 million capital for a petroleum exporting venture in the autonomous region. The firm has trading links with Malaysian petroleum exporting companies.

The Al Mujahidun Agro-Resources and Development, Inc. started establishing on July 30 an "all organic" 1,500-hectare Cavendish banana plantation in Barangay Masalay in Ampatuan municipality in Maguindanao.

Maguindanao Gov. Esmael Mangudadatu, who helped put up the multi-million Cavendish banana project, said foreign benefactors of the newly-established firm promised to construct a medical dispensary and an Islamic school in Ampatuan as part of its corporate social responsibility.

"The company will also establish diversified demonstration farms which local folks can duplicate in their communities," Mangudadatu said.

The banana firm has infused P570 million-worth of initial capital for the project, expected to employ more than 2,000 workers.

"We have conveniently exceeded by many folds our investment target this year which is only P700 million," said Mastura, who studied international petroleum trading laws in the United Kingdom.

Mastura said the RBOI-ARMM is thankful to Hataman for his extensive support to the investment attraction programs of the board and the regional government's trade and industry department.

AL MUJAHIDUN AGRO-RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT AL MUJAHIDUN AGRO-RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT INC AMPATUAN ARMM AUTONOMOUS REGION BANGSAMORO OIL AND FUELS CORPORATION BARANGAY MASALAY DARUSSALAM MINING CORPORATION ESMAEL MANGUDADATU HATAMAN
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