The Regional Board of Investments (RBOI), Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM) represented by RBOI Governor, Mohamad Pasigan and Supervising Investments Specialist, Jun Macalawan met with Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of Brunei Darussalam to the Republic of the Philippines, Her Excellency Johariah Wahab for a courtesy meeting at the Embassy of Brunei Darussalam in Makati City on September 5, 2019.
The meeting was to promote the investment opportunities of BARMM to Brunei investors and to inform the Embassy that the Bangsamoro region is open for business.
In the meeting, Pasigan said that the exploratory talk with Ambassador Wahab is the first step towards stronger partnerships and future joint collaborations in the aspect of business and investments that will provide economic, social and cultural benefit to Brunei and BARMM.
Pasigan further said that BARMM through RBOI has a menu of fiscal and non-fiscal incentives for investors willing to put their money in the region. RBOI is ready to assist and facilitate investment needs of investors.
On her part, Ambassador Wahab mentioned that she looks forward to receiving development related proposals and potential investment projects so she can bring these up to Sultan Haji Hassanal Bolkiah Mu'izzaddin Waddaulah, the Sultan of Brunei for his appropriate action.
Another major agenda in the meeting was the commitment of both parties for continuous connectivity in terms of business and trade through the Brunei Darussalam-Indonesia-Malaysia- Philippines East ASEAN Growth Area (BIMP-EAGA) cooperation framework. BARMM through its island provinces, Basilan, Sulu and Tawi-Tawi, is known as the “Gateway to BIMP-EAGA” because of its strategic proximity to the ASEAN sub-region.
Moreover, RBOI reps expressed BARMM’s gratitude to the Brunei government for its support as an active member of the International Monitoring Team (IMT), by keeping the peace between the Government of the Philippines (GPH) and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) which resulted to the formulation and ratification of the Bangsamaro Organic Law (BOL), the law that established the BARMM.
Lastly, Pasigan mentioned that his office will prepare a report to be submitted to BARMM Chief Minister Ahod Balawag Ebrahim for his information and for him to take the necessary move to realize what transpired in the meeting.
One of Brunei’s great contribution to the Philippines particularly in Mindanao is the construction of the Grand Mosque of Cotabato City also known as Sultan Haji Hassanal Bolkiah Mosque, named after the Sultan of Brunei who funded the construction to help the emerging Muslim population in the Southern Philippines (Source: RBOI/Shamera Acoymo Abobakar).