Yesterday in Honduras were approved some changes to the Political Constitution by the National Congress, in order to clear the way for the establishment of Charter Cities in Honduras. This changes need to be ratified by the Congress after the 25th of this month.
The Honduran National Congress’ website explains what is the Honduras’ government conception of the Charter Cities, and its application to the Honduran reality:
What is a Model City or Charter City?
A Model City, or Charter City, as Americans call it, is a small territorial area of a particular country, with its own regulations and rapid economic development. In Honduras it is intended for the National Congress to approve that a small portion of the national territory may be selected with the intent of creating a center of progress and well-being, unique in the Latin-American region.
This city will have its own administration, depending on the National Government, that is, it will have a governor of Honduran nationality who will direct or administer that area or zone of the territory, who will be appointed by the President of the Republic then in office.
This kind of governor will have similar functions to that of a mayor in a municipality and therefore any issue raised will be resolved or judged by the local authority, either through a board or through any other means designated by the National Government.
In legal aspects the Judicial Branch will be able to intervene through certain judges with special characteristics, who are going to have their residence in the area in question. Tax collection will be internal, since these territories are established as free trade zones.
Education in these areas will be 100 percent bilingual. The English language is to be preferred, but other options are German, French or any European or Asian language.
In this way, and from this point of view, there would be no dismemberment of the national territory, because sovereignty is inviolable, as the Constitution says, but what would indeed exist is the participation of national and foreign investors attending this territory in order to express their intents regarding the behavior of its administration.
For the information of the people in general, this issue is being discussed and negotiated with the five political parties represented in the Legislative Branch, and with business and industry sectors of the country, since it is expected that this project will provide the nation a development never seen before, and as an example we can refer to what happens in Mainland China, where 16 zones of this nature already exist, as it was the case for many years with Hong Kong City.
In Honduras, various places of the national geography are being mentioned to build such city, as for example the Valley of Agalta in Olancho or some regions in the department of Colon, among others, which are almost uninhabited, almost pristine zones, that do not have any production, but in order to achieve this objective it is necessary and important to have the assistance of all country sectors.