The Philippine National Bank located on Negros Occidental provincial government property at Lacson Street next to the Capitol Lagoon Park in Bacolod City is under renovation.
When PNB was totally government-owned in 1965, the provincial government leased the property where its main Bacolod branch stands on for 99 years, or up to 2065, for the amount of P100,000.
The bank was acquired by tycoon Lucio Tan after it was privatized by the government, and became the first universal bank in the Philippines in 1980.
Negros Occidental Gov. Alfredo Marañon Jr. yesterday said that even if the bank has been privatized, it is difficult to rescind the original lease contract.
As an additional means of compensating the provincial government, the bank has agreed to allot its mezzanine floor for free use by the provincial government, he said.
Marañon said the crowded Provincial Environment and Management Office will be moved to the PNB mezzanine floor.
The bank had leased the whole block where it is located from the Capitol and is currently bulldozing the front part of the property for the possible construction of another building, the governor said.
In 2008 the bank returned a 4,000-square meter lot at the corner Lacson Street and North Capitol Road back to the provincial government. The Capitol has leased the property to AyalaLand that is currently building a hotel on the site.*CPG
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