DAVAO CITY (MindaNews/19 July) – Investors should consider other urban areas in Davao Region as possible investment areas to spread out development and prevent congestion amid the influx of businesses entering Davao City, a business leader from Tagum City said.
Tagum City Chamber of Commerce president Virgilio F. Agunod, in an interview on Wednesday, mentioned Tagum, Panabo, and Digos cities as potential areas for the investors’ expansion plans.
“We need to scatter development, so that it will not congest Davao City. Tagum is a very potential investment area. We are strategically located and it’s in between the provinces. It’s going to Davao Oriental, to Davao City with access road going to Bukidnon via Talaingod,” he said.
Tagum has grown by several folds for the past 10 years with more areas converted into industrial zones to cater to more private investors, he said.
The region achieved a milestone double-digit economic growth of 10.9 percent in 2017, the highest in the history of the region, owing to the stellar performance in industry and service sectors, according to the Philippines Statistics Authority (PSA) 11.
The region’s growth surpassed its 9.5-percent growth in 2016 and was the second fastest among the country’s 17 regions and the fastest in Mindanao. Its gross regional domestic product (GRDP) was above the national average of 6.7 percent.
The services sector accounted for the highest share in Davao’s GRDP with 49.6 percent, industry 39.2 percent, and agriculture, hunting, forestry, and fishing, 11.2 percent, the PSA said.
It added the industry grew by 19.1 percent, owing to the improving performance of the construction sector, which accelerated to 38.2 percent in 2017 from 24 percent in 2016; manufacturing, 11.4 percent from 11.3 percent in 2016; mining and quarrying, 18.2 percent from 15.7 percent in 2016. But electricity, gas and water supply decelerated to 3.8 percent from 43.5 percent in 2016.
Agunod said the local government of Tagum has pushed for the construction of another airport there to cater to the growing number of travelers in the region and neighboring provinces.
A 2,000-hectare property has been prepared in case the national government approves of this proposal, he said.
“It’s a dream but we are working on it. We are doing our best and, of course. If the chamber would discuss this, we would come up with a solid and specific position paper,” he added.
The prospects for investments in Mindanao will be tackled during the Mindanao Business Conference (MinBizCon) with the theme “Building Peace, Building Progress, and Building Sustainable Business” from September 13 to 15, 2018 at the Big 8 Corporate Hotel in Tagum
The Tagum Chamber of Commerce will host this year’s annual gathering of Mindanawon businessmen along with the Davao City Chamber of Commerce and Inc. aimed to “create a venue for discussion of both economic concerns and opportunities and eventually lead to policy actions for the development of Mindanao.”
He said the business sector, government agencies, and other stakeholders are expected to convene during various sessions highlighting both the current opportunities and the unexplored potentials of the island.
The conference will have guest speakers from both government and private sectors to talk about the on-going and future projects in Mindanao and to discuss the island’s economic landscape. (Antonio L. Colina IV/MindaNews)