Gearing up for AEC: Ecofusion opens in Davao Friday

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DAVAO CITY (MindaNews/05 October) — A one-stop facility called “Ecofusion” will open at the Abreeza of the Ayala Malls on Tuesday, a move that is seen to promote trade, tourism, and investment opportunities of Mindanao and Palawan.

The Ecofusion is a project of Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) 11 and Davao Ecocrafts Association Inc.

Speaking at the Brunei, Darussalam-Indonesia-Malaysia-Philippines East Asean Growth Area (BIMP-EAGA) Trade and Tourism Investment Forum, DTI-11 director Maria Belenda Q. Ambi said the facility will house various products and information on the investment opportunities of the two islands.

The center was conceptualized as one of the interventions of the BIMP-EAGA Trade and Investment Facilitation Cluster, as the economic sub-region is gearing up for the Asean Economic Community (AEC), a single-based production center which takes effect in December this year.

“The BIMP-EAGA efforts are not contained in BIMP-EAGA but we are also looking at AEC as a whole. We cannot compete with each other, considering we are producing same product. We are looking at partnerships with the private sector for them to have bigger volume,” Ambi said.

Products form other BIMP-EAGA member countries are also welcome to join the Ecofusion, which represents the three major development principles of the sub- region’s commitments such as ecological balance, eco-tourism and economic development, a briefer said.

But Ambi emphasized they wanted to focus on the Philippines’ strengths before rolling out all over BIMP-EAGA.

“The word ‘fusion,’ on the other hand, depicts the integration of initiatives on trade, tourism, environment and investments of the four member-countries,” the briefer said.

It added that Ecofusion will serve as a venue as well for tourism and investment promotion that provides data and information to investors, tourists and other stakeholders.

On the information side, Ambi said they hope to highlight Philippine’s customs procedures in trading and requirements to make the facilitation easier for exporters and producers of goods, such as coconut and cacao products.

She said increasing the production volume must be improved to be able to keep up in the market integration.

“There are already enrollees from other regions. There are cubicles and stands where they can put in their products. This is not going to be that big but this is important that we have put up this kind of showcase for the local players,” she added. (Antonio L. Colina IV/MindaNews)

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