After serving four presidents in the last 21 years, Philippine Economic Zone Authority (PEZA) director-general Lilia B. de Lima announced her retirement on Wednesday, June 29.
The retirement of De Lima comes a day before Pres. Benigno S. Aquino III steps down and turns over the reins of the government to President-elect Rodrigo Duterte.
De Lima was appointed PEZA chief by former Pres. Fidel V. Ramos when the agency was created in 1995. The lady lawyer managed to hold on to her post even during tumultuous years of the Estrada and Arroyo administrations.
The post of PEZA director general, which is equivalent to the rank of a department undersecretary, is appointed by the chief executive.
The agency currently has 3,756 registered enterprises doing business in 343 PEZA-accredited economic zones.
From 1995 to 2016, total investments of foreign and local companies in PEZA amounted to P3.157 trillion. For the first four months of the 2016 alone, approved investments reached P48.76 billion, an increase of 19 percent from the same period in 2015.
?PEZA is in its ripened, full-grown, and matured stage to be able to ceaselessly pursue its mandated tasks to get and attract more investments, in order to create more employment opportunities for our people, and generate much needed exports revenues for the country with endless vigor and determination,? she told PEZA officers and staff. — PNA