THE Board of Investments (BoI) said it approved for incentives a P9.6-million face mask production project run by Ipolymer Solutions Corp.

In a statement on Monday, the BoI said that the project is located in Caloocan City with annual capacity of 13.2 million KN95 face masks and 26.4 million surgical masks.

It added that the project will import 100% of the raw materials needed for production.

“The increasing production of medical-grade face masks entails additional imports of raw materials (non-woven fabric), which might help the National Government to promote investment in the production of these raw materials in the country,” the BoI said.

According to Trade Secretary Ramon M. Lopez, the project will help meet rising local demand for face masks due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“During these difficult times — be it natural calamities or global health crises — the local capability to supply critical and strategic products such as medical-grade face masks is crucial and serves as a reminder of the importance of developing our domestic manufacturing industry,” he added.

The BoI said the project was approved under the “All Qualified Activities Relating to the Fight against the COVID-19 Pandemic – Essential Goods” category of the 2020 Investment Priorities Plan, which serves as the transitional Strategic Investment Priorities Plan. The plan covers personal protective equipment (PPE) as authorized by Republic Act No. 11534 or the Corporate Recovery and Tax Incentives for Enterprises Act (CREATE) law.

BoI Managing Head Ceferino S. Rodolfo urged mask-producing firms to invest in the Philippines.

This goes to show that we can make it happen in the Philippines, as the BoI has been the catalyst for a modern economy as we recover from the pandemic. Thus, we invite other mask-producing companies to invest here in the Philippines to further fill the gaps in providing more affordable critical PPE,” Mr. Rodolfo said.  

To date, the BoI said it has registered two projects in 2020 for face mask production: Sunwest Construction and Development Corp. in Marilao, Bulacan with an annual capacity of 15.6 million and Nagaland Development Corp. in Naga City, Camarines Sur, with a yearly capacity of 2.4 million. — Revin Mikhael D. Ochave