CATHAY LAND, Inc., the property developer behind South Forbes, is pouring P2.5 billion in an outlet mall in Silang, Cavite.

In a statement, Cathay Land said the company is bullish on the prospects of Acienda Designer Outlet, which is being jointly developed with London-based Freeport Retail. Phase 1 of Acienda is scheduled to open on Aug. 2.

Acienda Designer Outlet is located on a 20-hectare property 10 minutes north of the Tagaytay City Rotunda along Km. 48 Aguinaldo Highway in Silang.

Cathay Land said construction on the project is in its final stages, with units expected to be turned over to retail partners in March.

“With the construction of the Cavite-Laguna Expressway in full blast… our Acienda Designer Outlet will only be 30 minutes away from NAIA (Ninoy Aquino International Airport) and the Entertainment City. Thus, now is the right time to introduce a world-class outlet experience to Manilans and the nearby provinces,” Jeffrey Ng, Cathay Land president, was quoted as saying in the statement.

“We expect that phenomenal growth of world-class outlet malls to be duplicated here in the Philippines mainly due to rising incomes locally, remittances from abroad and tourist arrivals that will hit 10 million a year in the next few years,” he added.

Chris Milliken, Freeport Retail cofounder and commercial director, noted outlet malls have seen “massive” sales growth worldwide.

“The Outlet format is an established and mainstream retail channel that works for brands, retailers and of course, the consumers. Since we started back in 1992, Freeport has developed outlets throughout Europe. In 2012, we started our focus on Asia, which is a major outlet opportunity. Our outlet village in Malaysia opened at the end of 2015,” Mr. Milliken said.

Freeport Retail is described as a specialist developer and operator of Designer Outlets. Its most recent project, Freeport A’famosa in Malacca, Malaysia, opened in November 2015.

Cathay Land’s previous projects include the South Forbes, Astoria Boracay, Regency Executive Town Homes subdivision in Dasmariñas, Cavite, and Cavite Light Industrial Park in Silang.

The property developer is part of the Cathay Group of Companies, which include Cathay Metal Corp. Eurotiles Industrial Corp., PC Express, Federal Hardware Builders Center and Cathay Pacific Steel Corp.