BCDA, French group ink deal to develop Clark Green City

Alexis Romero (Philstar.com) - December 1, 2015 - 11:35pm

PARIS – State-run Bases Conversion and Development Authority (BCDA) and French organization Vivapolis on Tuesday signed an agreement for the development of the 9,450-hectare Clark Green City in Pampanga.

President Benigno Aquino III witnessed the signing of the memorandum of understanding, which will form a non-binding framework for future collaboration for sustainable urban development.

The agreement was inked by BCDA president and chief executive officer Arnel Paciano Casanova and Vivapolis senior adviser to the minister of foreign affairs and international development Michelle Pappalardo.

Presidential Communications Operations Office Secretary Herminio Coloma Jr. said Vivapolis, an umbrella group of public and private French stakeholders on urban development, would help BCDA build the innovation center district of Clark Green City.

“Vivapolis is envisioned to invest in the Philippines’ human capital by bringing in experts advice, best practices, methodologies, and transfer of knowledge for the project,” Coloma said.  

“This partnership will create an attractive business environment and opportunities for French companies to come in,” he added.

The agreement calls for technical cooperation  in sustainable city planning, eco-governance, infrastructure and utilities, clean technology products, and solutions, sustainable resource management and training among other areas.

BCDA and Vivapolis will also work together to ensure the sustainability of urban development by designing sustainable business models and establishing methods of governance.

The two parties may also form a strategic relationship to foster technical cooperation on human resources development. A technical cooperation committee will be formed to implement cooperative activities under the agreement, which will last for one year.

A flagship project of the government, Clark Green City is a mixture of industry and agriculture with existing infrastructure and connectivity to Manila and the rest of the country.

The Clark Green City official website described the area as “the next big metropolis” and “a destination where nature, lifestyle and business, education, and industry converge into a global city based on principles of sustainability.”

Business meetings

Meanwhile, Aquino capped his visit to this city by meeting with business executives.

He met with officials of Sanofi Pasteur, a company that developed a vaccine candidate against dengue fever that may be introduced to the Philippines. Health Secretary Janette Garin said the government is now formulating guidelines on the use of the vaccine candidate.

“Registration of the vaccine by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is underway and is expected to be completed soon,” Garin said in a statement issued by Coloma.

Sanofi Pasteur’s dengue vaccine candidate became the first to complete the phase three or the advanced, pre-product launch clinical studies in 2014. Studies involving more than 40,000 subjects are still being conducted in 15 dengue-endemic and non-endemic countries, including the Philippines.

Aquino also met with Anders Skeini, chief executive officer of Jacobi Carbons Group. The company produces activated carbons using coconut-based raw materials.

The company is also into co-generation of electric power and has a new plant in Cagayan de Oro, the largest facility using coconut shells as raw materials.


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