RBOI meets stakeholders in Parang, Maguindanao

The Regional Board of Investments-ARMM met stakeholders from different sectors to review and update the 2016 ARMM Investment Priorities Plan (IPP). The consultation conducted on April 6, 2016 was held for the first time in Parang, Maguindanao. This is to include the people in this booming municipality to actively participate and share their insights and concerns on investments generation in the ARMM. It is also in Parang where the Polloc Freeport and Ecozone is located.

Lawyer, Ishak V. Mastura, Chairman of RBOI said that the IPP is the basis for RBOI to grant fiscal and non-fiscal incentives to registered enterprises. The active participation of the government and private sectors in the development planning of the region is one key to sustainable development. Combined strengths of different sectors can create a conducive business environment and enhance regional competitiveness. IPP consultations are avenues to assess the region’s economic investment performance, issues and opportunities. Other IPP consultations are also scheduled in other areas in the ARMM within the year.

Mastura said that so far RBOI has registered P1.3 billion investments in the first quarter of 2016 through the registration of Gintong Agri Corporation which is into oil palm plantation development in Datu Odin Sinsuat, Maguindanao. Last year RBOI registered P6.5 billion total investments. “We have reached our 2016 target which is to register P900 million worth of investments and confident to register additional P1 billion or more this year”, Mastura added.

For his part, Regional Governor Mujiv Hataman said in a text message that “the challenge for the ARMM government is how to sustain the growth of investments which the region is currently experiencing particularly in the areas of agriculture, renewable energy and petroleum as core industries”.

Regional Planning and Development Office (RPDO) Assistant Director, Mlang Madal presented during the consultation that in 2011, ARMM has negative -0.3% growth rate but in 2014, it has increased to 3%. This means that the economy of ARMM is improving and picking-up with the rest of the country and one reason is the increase of investments. According to RPDO report, good governance reforms spearheaded by the Regional Governor Hataman is the primary factor for the growth of the ARMM economy since the national government entrusted him with billion pesos worth of projects particularly on infrastructure such as roads and bridges.

Another presenter, Regional Economic Zone Authority Director and OIC Manager of Polloc Freeport, Eshan Karl Mabang presented on the current status of the Freeport as the only economic zone in the region and how this can help grow industries and spur economic activities in the ARMM and nearby municipalities and cities.

The IPP shall correspond to the Regional Development Plan of ARMM in accordance with the 2011-2016 Philippine Development Plan. Investments projects shall be founded on the following parameters: (1) project’s net value added, (2) job generation, (3) multiplier effect and (4) measured capacity. Though the 2014-2016 IPP to include the ARMM List is a rolling three-year plan to ensure continuity, consistency and predictability however, it is subject to annual review over the three-year period. (SOURCE: RBOI)