MANILA -- Studies are underway on the construction of the so-called Government Arsenal Defense Industry Economic Zone in Limay, Bataan, Department of National Defense (DND) spokesperson Arsenio Andolong said Friday.

"The Government Arsenal is now studying this proposal to create the Government Arsenal Defense Industry Economic Zone. There are now some presentations but we still have to submit this to the President as he is the only one authorized to declare its (creation)," Andolong said in an interview.

The Government Arsenal (GA) is a DND-attached agency tasked to provide ammunition and some basic weapons to the military and police.

Once this proposal goes into high gear, it will be constructed in government lands near the GA complex in Limay, Bataan, Andolong said.

Last year, Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana said efforts were underway to develop a special economic zone for manufacturers interested in supplying the Philippine military’s needs.

He added that the move is in line with initiatives to revive the country's Self-Reliant Defense Posture (SRDP) program, considering the variety of security threats it is facing.

"Considering the present threats to our sovereignty, such as terrorism and territorial disputes, it is about time to revive the SRDP program and highlight once again the need for enhanced external defense capabilities," Lorenzana said.

He added that the country had an SRDP program in the 1970s that aimed to provide support to the military in terms of weapons, platforms, and equipment. Unfortunately, it did not attain so much success and its implementation was discontinued because of several impediments, such as budgetary limitations. (PNA)