Green com­pany a vic­tim of gos­sip

Sun.Star Cagayan de Oro - - Front Page - BY JACK BIANTAN

AFilipino-For­eign Green Com­pany which was wel­comed by the Phividec In­dus­trial Es­tate to in­vest in their Tag­u­luan town prop­erty, has been un­fairly put into bad light re­cently.

The com­pany has been cre­ated to process re­cy­clable plas­tics into briskets and pel­lets for ex­ports. It has been a vic­tim of gos­sips from lo­cal politi­cians and the bu­reau­cracy of a lo­cal gov­ern­ment agency.

Then the me­dia par­tic­u­larly a big TV Net­work fu­eled the fire then ev­ery­one has branded the com­pany as an en­emy of the en­vi­ron­ment.

I don’t work for the com­pany. I don’t rep­re­sent them but I am very close to their Filipino ex­ec­u­tives. They were old high school mates and new friends from Cebu. The Korean in­vestor is also a friend.

It was painful to wit­ness these gen­tle­men be­ing grilled in front of grand­stand­ing politi­cians in a hear­ing to air their side of the story.

The com­pany is new in the busi­ness of re­cy­cling. In­stead get­ting the help from the lo­cal gov­ern­ment and the no­to­ri­ous gov­ern­ment agency, all it got were end­less charges from the peo­ple who were sup­posed to help them.

The charges were all false and I would in­sist that the com­pany is im­port­ing shred­ded plas­tic raw ma­te­ri­als to be pro­cessed and made into plas­tic briskets and plas­tic pel­lets to be shipped back China and Korea.

These briskets will then be made into fuel as sub­sti­tute for coal for power plants while the pel­lets will be pro­cessed and made into hard plas­tics for ta­bles, chair and other fur­ni­tures.

Why I in­sist that the charges are false? Be­cause I have been to the fac­tory many times. If the tons of shred­ded plas­tics were garbage it could have smelled rot­ten and the res­i­dents could have com­plained.

Most of the me­dia have called the raw ma­te­ri­als garbage in their re­ports. How many times have they been told that these are not garbage. These are shred­ded plas­tics and raw ma­te­ri­als to be turned into briskets and pel­lets. They must be deaf or blind.

They were in­vited to the place and saw the shred­ded plas­tics. They were asked if it smelled garbage. Their an­swers were no. But they would al­ways men­tion in their re­ports garbage. I give up. They are just dumb.

The DENR has found less than one per­cent trash from the raw ma­te­ri­als and yet the gov­ern­ment agency who are mak­ing the life of this Green Com­pany dif­fi­cult is still mak­ing noise.

I un­der­stand, lo­cal politi­cians would try to cap­i­tal­ize on this is­sue to get some me­dia mileage be­cause of the com­ing elec­tions. Some of them have suc­ceeded and have landed in the front pages of some lo­cal news­pa­pers.

The politi­cians in that side of Misamis Ori­en­tal are no­to­ri­ous for mak­ing the lives of in­vestors in the Phividec dif­fi­cult. Re­mem­ber Han­jin?

In 2007-2009 one of South Korea’s ship­build­ing com­pa­nies, Han­jin made a bold pro­posal to build a $2 bil­lion ship­build­ing fa­cil­i­ties in Tagoloan. The project could have cre­ated 40,000 jobs for the town. It was an ad­di­tion to Han­jin’s $1Bil­lion Su­bic Bay ship­build­ing in­vest­ment that was al­ready in con­struc­tion.

Han­jin was also re­spon­si­ble for build­ing

the Bu­tuan-Ili­gan road dur­ing that time. Their in­vest­ment could have been the big­gest di­rect for­eign in­vest­ment in Min­danao.

The gov­ern­ment un­der then Pres­i­dent Glo­ria Ar­royo con­verted the Phividec into a spe­cial eco­nomic zone in 2008 to make it eas­ier to ac­com­mo­date large in­vestors.

Han­jin could have brought an ex­port earn­ing of $1.7 Bil­lion of ocean-go­ing ves­sels lo­cally. The project failed to take off when lo­cal pol­i­tics and the in­sen­si­tive acts of the lo­cal gov­ern­ment of­fi­cials killed the project.

Now, this new Green com­pany is get­ting the same treat­ment. The com­pany has been try­ing to get per­mits, build its fa­cil­i­ties and ne­go­ti­at­ing with au­thor­i­ties for al­most two years now.

They have al­ready spent mil­lions of dol­lars try­ing to start their re­cy­cling busi­ness. Yet they have not earned a sin­gle cent yet. If you are the in­vestor what would you do?

This com­pany is not as big as Han­jin. Their raw ma­te­ri­als, the ma­chiner­ies are stuck with this wicked gov­ern­ment agency. If it starts op­er­a­tion, the com­pany could em­ploy thou­sands of lo­cal peo­ple. It could also solve our prob­lem with plas­tics. It could put mil­lions into the lo­cal econ­omy.

As of the mo­ment, the com­pany is im­port­ing those shred­ded plas­tics from Korea be­cause there are no lo­cal sup­pli­ers of shred­ded plas­tics yet. In the long run, the com­pany will buy shred­ded plas­tics from lo­cal sources. Imag­ine what can it do to the en­tire prov­ince or even Min­danao.

This com­pany can help solve our prob­lems with plas­tics. In­stead of ac­cus­ing it of be­ing an en­emy of the en­vi­ron­ment, why can’t we help it. To the peo­ple who spread the gos­sips please go to the plant and check. For the grand­stand­ing lo­cal politi­cians, go also to the plant and check. I bet you have not been there yet.

This com­pany was en­vi­sioned by its founders to help the peo­ple of Min­danao get rid and re­cy­cle plas­tics. Why can’t we help them. ([email protected] gmail.com)

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