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Philippines Subic Bay Freeport Zone & Registration
Freeport Zone (SBF), simply as Subic
Bay is the Philippines' first successful military base
conversion developed through volunteerism into a tax and duty free
zone similar to Hong Kong or Singapore. It is operated and managed
by the Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority. A former U.S. Naval Base,
Subic Bay is located in the southwest of Luzon Island in the
Philippines Olongapo City, the municipalities of Subic in Zambales
and Hermosa and Morong in Bataan in concurrence of their
Sangguniang Bayan pursuant to Section 12 of RA 7227. The harbor is
located by Olongapo City facing the Zambales Mountain Range in the
west and the Subic Bay opening up to the South China Sea. It is
northwest of the Bataan Peninsula and southwest of the Zambales
Province. SBF is 110 kilometers north of Manila. Manila Bay and the
Bataan Peninsula separate SBF from Manila. The mountain ranges
around the Subic Bay area and the deep natural harbor provide
excellent and protected anchorage. In addition, these features make
SBF naturally sheltered from typhoons as well as from the effects
of the eruption of Mt. Pinatubo.
Subic Bay Freeport is in Region III or the Central Luzon Region. It is one of the points in the growth triangle and is an engine for economic development in the region. SBF is a supplier of services and products for the Central Luzon Development Program, a regional growth area composed of the provinces of Bulacan, Nueva Ecija, Tarlac, Pampanga, Bataan, and Zambales.
History of Subic Bay
Subic Bay is surrounded by the town
of Subic and Olongapo City, both in the province of Zambales.
Development of Olongapo City was largely tied to the presence of
the United States Navy base at Subic Bay, once the largest U.S.
military naval base in Asia. An arsenal1885 by the then colonial
power, Spain. Following the Spanish-American war, Subic Bay became
a U.S. Navy and Marine base, and grew to be a major facility. Until
1991, it was the base of the United States 7th Fleet.
In early 1991, after the collapse of protracted negotiations, the Philippine Senate rejected terms for renewal of the lease of the base. The US Navy was already in the process of downsizing its Subic operations in June 1991, when Mount Pinatubo erupted. One of the largest volcanic eruptions in the last 100 years, it covered the Navy Base in volcanic ash and collapsed a significant number of structures. The last ship, USS Belleau Wood, left on November 24, 1992.
Subic Bay Today
Subic Bay, the Philippines' first free port, continues to be one of the country's major economic engines with more 700 investment projects, including the 4th largest shipbuilding facility in the world (Hanjin Heavy Industries and Construction (HHIC)). Currently upgrading its port facilities through the Subic Bay Port Development Project and forging ties with the Clark Special Economic Zone in Pampanga to form the Subic-Clark Corridor via the 45-kilometer Subic-Clark Toll Road, these once bastions of western military might are now being positioned to become the most competitive international service and logistics center in Southeast Asia. On January 18, 2008, Hermias Adamos, 30, and Mario Laxamana, 32, died while Jonathan Martinez, Gilbert Suba and a certain Donald suffered second degree burns and were rushed to James. L. Gordon Hospital, after an explosion hit the Hanjin shipyard in Barangay Cawag 2, Subic, Zambales. Superintendent Cesar Jacob, Subic police chief, reported that "the explosion happened inside one of the ships being completed at Assembly shop dry dock number 5 at 11:40 a.m; the ship is more or less 60 percent complete; it was not acetylene tank as we earlier reported, but an oily portion of the ship being built that exploded when it came in contact with flaming or hot welding rod that accidentally dropped from one of the workers."
As a destination, Subic Bay has maintained its allure to tourists and investors. Many foreign companies are now registering businesses in Subic and taking advantage of its tax incentives.
Contact Kittelson & Carpo Consulting