Central Bank to open full branch in Bohol

After years of staunch lobbying in Manila, the Monetary Board (MB) has finally approved the establishment of a Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) full branch in Bohol.

The board, which has seven members appointed by the Philippine president, exercises the powers and functions of the BSP, also known as the Central Bank (CB).

Gov. Edgar Chatto yesterday broke the news of important economic indication after confirming it during his conversation with BSP Gov. Nestor Espenilla, Jr. and Dep. Gov. Diwa Gunigundo in Manila.

This much-anticipated development recognizes Bohol’s bullish economic growth, the governor said while citing the partnering effort of the province’s banking and business sector for the CB branch project.

Gunigundo and lawyer Elmore Capule, BSP assistant governor and general counsel, had then assured their full support to the Bohol request for a CB branch when both attended Chatto’s State of the Province Address (SOPA) in 2016.

The MB approval includes the project location and procurement of the building, which will cost P300 million, Chatto said.

The full CB branch in Bohol will have conference, research and information technology facilities to ensure quick banking services.

Safety and security are guaranteed, Chatto was assured, while new bills will, by that time, always in circulation, doing away with the old notes.

Chaired by the BSP governor, the MB approved the project during its meeting on Friday.

Usually, the board meets every Thursday, but on some occasions, it convenes to discuss urgent issues and concerns.

NEAR THE AIRPORT

The CB branch will rise near the Bohol-Panglao island airport, but on the Dauis side, according to the governor.

Panglao island consists of the municipalities of Panglao, where the airport is located, and Dauis

The airport will commercially operate by August next year, a commitment reiterated by the Japanese project consultants and the contractor to Department of Transportation (DOTr) Sec. Arthur Tugade on Tuesday.

Aboard a small private plane on the same day, Tugade conducted test flight and symbolic landing right on the runway even if the new airport is yet to be completed by June in 2018.

The DOTr chief told the media he just fulfilled his promise to the governor that he would return to see the airport construction’s impressive progress, this time by aplane that would try to touch down on the runway.

Tugade made the promise to Chatto when both visited the airport site during the ASEAN meeting in Panglao a month ago.

The DOTr secretary brought along with him aboard the plane for the symbolic landing National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) Sec. Ernesto Pernia and Cabinet Sec. Leoncio Evasco, Jr.

The Bohol-Panglao airport of international standard, also the country’s “first and only resort, green airport,” and the BSP branch in one touristisland are twin economic growth monuments of no known precedent nationwide.

FASTTRACK IMPLEMENTATION

Now that the approval of the land purchase and building procurement has been approved, Espenilla assured Chatto of the project implementation to be fast-tracked.

Chatto expected the project groundbreaking to happen before 2017 ends or early next year. (VenreboArigo)

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