Sagada Mayor James Pooten has confirmed that the Ayalas are looking to develop a 20-hectare private property in the town.
The Mountain Province politiko made the confirmation after locals expressed their opposition to the entry of the business tycoon.
Pooten said that there is an unwritten rule that Sagada lands cannot be sold to outsiders.
He explained that the rule is made so that Sagada is protected from abuse.
The indigenous peoples of Sagada earlier said that the town has the smallest land area in the province.
“For its small size, our territory has been blessed with a spectacular landscape and source of land and pride for us people and the envy of visitors who come for adventure, enjoyment and relaxation,” he said.