MANILA - Quezon City intends to speed up the processing of permits in keeping with the spirit of the Ease of Doing Business Law but will not waive important requirements for businesses deemed as 'high risk,' the city's Mayor said on Monday.
Mayor Joy Belmonte said that she intends to keep Quezon City's status as the most competitive city in the Philippines by making sure that applications for business permits are processed "immediately" for businesses that are deemed low-risk.
But for businesses seen as "high risk," the local government will insist on compliance with sanitary permits, environmental clearances, fire clearances and other requirements.
Belmonte added that Quezon City's experiences with tragic fires such as the one that engulfed the Manor Hotel and the Ozone Disco years ago have shown that compliance with fire safety regulations is very important.
"Real ease of doing business means making things faster, easier, more convenient without sacrificing anything that might affect the integrity of the business," Belmonte said in an exclusive interview with ANC's The Boss.
The Department of Trade and Industry last week said Quezon City was the most competitive highly urbanized city in the Philippines for the 4th time.
Quezon City bested other cities in terms of government efficiency, with Manila coming in second and Davao City in third place.
Belmonte credited this to the city's one-stop shop for issuing business permits.
In terms of infrastructure, Quezon City also emerged on top followed by Manila, Davao, Pasay and Makati.
Infrastructure, however, will not be on top of Quezon City government's agenda starting next year, Belmonte said.
Developing the city's human capital through education, health and other social services will be the focus of the new QC administration, she said as former Mayor Herbert Bautista has already rolled out a lot of infrastructure for the city, she said.