Olongapo SubicBay BatangGapo Newscenter

Saturday, September 24, 2005

Investors hail appointments of SBMA’s Salonga, Arreza

SUBIC BAY FREEPORT — Foreign and local investors have lauded the appointments of Commodore Feliciano Salonga and Armand Arreza as the new chairman and administrator, respectively, of the Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority (SBMA).

They said that the management, financial, and investor promotions expertise and wealth of experience of Salonga and Arreza would be instrumental in making the Subic Freeport an even better world-class facility.

Salonga and Arreza took their oaths of office last Wednesday before Executive Secretary Eduardo Ermita in Malacañang.

Local investors, headed by Joseph Chou, chairman of the Subic Bay Development Management Corp. Inc., developer and administrator of the Subic Bay Industrial Park, said President Arroyo made prudent appointments when she chose Salonga and Arreza.

"We welcome the new SBMA leaders with fresh hopes that the new administration will promote the business success of Subic Bay Freeport investors and put their concerns on top of the SBMA agenda," Chou said in a letter to Mrs. Arroyo.

"We also pledge to support their new policies and projects which aim to increase the investors’ competitiveness in the international market and promote the freeport to be world-class," Chou added.

Local officials of Zambales, Bataan and Olongapo City gave the two new SBMA officials a warm welcome during the formal turnover of the SBMA leadership at the Subic Bay Arts Center yesterday.

Salonga replaced former Ayala Land executive Francisco Licuanan who resigned last month, while Arreza took the place of Alfredo Antonio, who served as holdover administrator in the past two months after his appointment to the Monetary Board.

The foreign investors said Salonga, a marine engineering graduate of the US Merchant Marine Academy and holder of a Master’s degree in business administration and several awards, is ideal to chair the SBMA.

They said Salonga could use his experience with various shipyard and marine companies in steering the full development of the Subic Freeport.

Salonga was a former vice chairman of the Bataan Shipyard and Engineering Co. Inc., executive chairman of the Sabah Shipyard Philippines Inc., president and general manager of Philippine Shipyard and Engineering, commercial manager of PNOC Marine Corp., and marketing director of Dynamarine Corp.

Salonga is the father of international singer and actress Lea Salonga.

On the part of Arreza, the investors said his youth, dynamism and wide-ranging experience will enable the SBMA to craft and achieve its development goals for the Subic Freeport.

They said Arreza was already highly familiar with SBMA operations having served as the agency’s financial controller and analyst from 1993 to 1996.

As former SBMA financial controller and analyst, he planned and managed the implementation of SBMA’s long-term Capital Investment Program, including $175 million in infrastructure projects undertaken with the assistance of the World Bank and other multilateral institutions.

Arreza was also an undersecretary of the Department of Tourism from 2003 to 2005, spearheading several DOT priority projects. — Phil Star With Bebot Sison Jr.


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