Bucas Grande Flagship Tourism Enterprise Zone (BGFTEZ)

The Bucas Grande Flagship Tourism Enterprise Zone (BGFTEZ) situated in Municipality of Socorro (Bucas Grande Island in Siargao) is a 167.7 hectare-area envisioned to be a world class tourism destination. It offers diverse experiences and attractions sustained by strong partnership between and among socially responsible, peace loving, and proud Siargaonons towards socio-economic development, environmental protection and cultural preservation.

On May 22, 2018, the Bucas Grande was designated as a Flagship Tourism Enterprise Zone. The Comprehensive Tourism Master Plan (CTMP) for BGFTEZ also presented a framework plan for the development of tourism for the whole Municipality of Socorro. The Socorro Tourism Framework Plan or Structure Plan will allow for the formulation of Tourism Circuits that will relate the BGFTEZ with other existing and potential major Tourism Influence Areas (TIAs) including Sohoton Bay. The three possible gateways to Bucas Grande Island are Siargao (Sayak Airport), Surigao Airport and Butuan Airport. Of the three gateways, Sayak Airport in Siargao Island is the preferred gateway due to its proximity to Bucas Grande Island and the recent introduction of direct flights to/from Manila (Ninoy Aquino International Airport).

With the rising tourist arrivals in the country, more and more tourists are expected to discover one of the best tourism destination in the Philippines within Bucas Grande, such as the Sohoton Bay with its distinct islands and coves; the Stingless Jellyfish Sanctuary; Giant Mangroves; Puyang Beach; and Tiktikan Lake.

Bucas Grande Island in Surigao del Norte

BGFTEZ and its Sub-Zones

The BGFTEZ is composed of sub-zones, namely: the Reception Area which houses the Extreme Adventure Park where activities and rides are offered and will give a peek of the breathtaking view of the; the Main Resort Area which is located in the center of the Zone and has about 3 hectares allocated for resort facilities; the Agri-tourism Zone or the Agriculture Production area which covers roughly 25 hectares and is envisioned to become one of the unique settings offered by BGFTEZ; the Forest Zone which is located in the southern edge of the Zone and identified as a site for an Eco-lodge in the future; the Mountain Zone which is located on the steep slopes in the northern area offering the best panoramic views of Siargao Island in the northeast and the Pacific Ocean in the east; the Bamboo Park which will showcase several bamboo species native to the Philippines, along with some plants that would complement the bamboo species; and the Themed Gardens which will relate to the BGFTEZ experience through the reflection of the distinctiveness of the area, and utilizing the environment, as well as providing education about the local flora and fauna.

The BGFTEZ is expected to develop a sustainable eco-tourism environment with unique tourism products that will attract the niche market with its prime facilities and services. In line with the BGFTEZ programs and projects, it will create, support, and develop local and community based socio-economic and cultural programs and projects as livelihood opportunities for the residents of Socorro and other communities in Siargao and Bucas Grande Islands. All these considerations will be in accordance with the SIPLAS Protected Area Management Plan. The BGFTEZ will also draw investment in all aspects of tourism including infrastructure, utilities, new products, destination marketing, human resource development, and others.

Tourism Enterprise Zones (TEZs)

A Tourism Enterprise Zone is an area characterized by being a contiguous territory; bearing historical and cultural significance, environmental beauty or tourism potential; having strategic access to utilities and transportation; stimulating sustainable socio-economic development; at least five (5) hectares in land area; and is at least five million dollars in investment. Private entities/corporations, Local Government Units/government instrumentalities, or Joint Venture Cooperation between the private and public sector may apply for designation as TEZs. TEZs and registered tourism enterprises are granted fiscal and non-fiscal incentives, thereby creating viable investment opportunities in the tourism industry.

With the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR)’s clarification last year that the incentives for TEZs under The Tourism Act of 2009 or Republic Act No. 9593 may be enjoyed by investors even beyond 2019 until these incentives are fully realized, investors have until August 2019 to apply with TIEZA and avail of the full package of incentives.

For identified Tourism Enterprise Zones, fiscal and non-fiscal incentive such as the six-year income tax holiday, 5% gross income taxation, and tax and duty free importation of goods and services, capital investment and equipment, and transportation equipment, as provided under R.A. 9593, will be available to tourism enterprises therein.

Signing of the Certificate of Designation for Bucas Grande Flagship Tourism Enterprise Zone(BGFTEZ) on July 26, 2018. Signed by (from left) Socorro Bayanihan Inc. President Ms. Rosalina Taruc,Municipality of Socorro Mayor Hon. Denia Florano, TIEZA Chief Operating Officer Mr. Pocholo Paragas,and TIEZA Assistant Chief Operating Officer Ms. Racquel Gaerlan.

Awarding of the Certificate of Designationfor Bucas Grande Flagship Tourism Enterprise Zone (BGFTEZ) on July 26, 2018.

Interested investors may contact the TEZ Management Secretariat at (02) 512-01-14 or email us at tez.secretariat@gmail.com and tez.secretatiat@tieza.gov.ph. For more information about TEZs, you may visit our website, www.tieza.gov.ph, or visit us at the 7th Floor of Tower 1, Double Dragon Plaza, Double Dragon Meridian Park, Macapagal Avenue corner EDSA Extension Bay Area, Pasay City.