A perspective of the proposed GT Industrial Park to be build in Melekeok. (Photo from project description)

A second public hearing for the planned call center project in Melekeok State will be conducted at the urging of the state’s residents.

Foreign Investment Board Chairperson Fermin Meriang, in an interview, said that the first public hearing for the planned $4-million call center facility for Chinese blockchain insurance company, GT Insurance Inc., was attended by their investigators.

The proposed second public hearing, however, has yet to be scheduled.

Meriang said that some residents, during the public hearing in Melekeok State on October 13, were concerned with some social impacts that the project will bring to the community such as residents becoming a minority if the company’s target of hiring 1,600 Chinese nationals is to be followed.

The latest data from the World Population Review revealed there are only 271 residents in Melekeok State.

The FIB chair said that they are working with other government offices in handling their investigations especially that their capacity to conduct investigations remains a challenge for lack of manpower.

The FIB previously revealed that the insurance’s company’s plan to build a call center facility in Melekeok State is outside the scope of the Foreign Investment Approval Certificate (FIAC) issued to it in January 2017.

FIAC No. 609-2017, which was issued to Chinese company GT Insurance Inc., was granted to the firm to operate within the scope of carrying out an insurance business and does not provide any mention of operating a call center.

The project called GT Industrial Park, according to its project description, will provide office space and accommodation facilities to 1,600 Chinese employees in Ngerubesang, Melekeok State. (Rhealyn C. Pojas)