Fresh from its successful opening salvo in Cebu City last week, the Philippine Board of Investments (BOI) continued its Strategic Investment Priority Plan (SIPP) Roadshow by opening the Mindanao leg in Cagayan de Oro City on July 26, 2022. The SIPP Roadshow was a success, attracting over 100 representatives and industry participants and reinforcing the city’s image not only as the City of Golden Friendship but also as the pathway to Northern Mindanao in a bid to make more investments attractive in the region.

”With this SIPP Roadshow, we reinforce our commitment to building back a better Philippines by strengthening the trade and investments of our region. Northern Mindanao remains among the largest regional economies in Mindanao. The region has a 4.7 percent share of the national economy in terms of gross domestic product,” Department of Trade and Industry 10 Regional Director Ermedio Abang said, pointing out that the region recorded a total of Php3.5 billion in terms of monitored investments in 2021 with 34 percent from wholesale trading and 14 percent from manufacturing.

He emphasized the region’s integrated complementary economy has opened more opportunities for the priority industry clusters to thrive, namely, coffee, cacao, high-value coconut-based products, processed fruits and nuts, rubber, wearables, bamboo, processed food, poultry, and information and communications technology.

“An effective logistics services sector is also in the works to facilitate trade and connectivity in the region. Eventually, with stable and reliable logistics, the region will encourage market expansion and improve investor confidence in transporting goods and services. These factors add to the many advantages of the region including having land, mineral, and marine resources and a strong service sector for agribusiness and manufacturing. Indeed, big opportunities await for investments in Region 10,” he added, recognizing the efforts of BOI in bringing the SIPP Roadshow to the region.

BOI Executive Director for Investment Promotion Evariste Cagatan said that “the region signals a bevy of busy economy activities like those big delivery trucks consistently plying their routes to and fro. It is just right we bring the SIPP Roadshow here since it is one of the most progressive regions in the country and we hope with the SIPP, businessmen will be enticed to go into more investments in the region,” as she discussed the salient features and incentive package of the SIPP under the Corporate Recovery and Tax Incentives for Enterprises (CREATE) Act.

National Economic Development Authority 10 Regional Director Mylah Faye Aurora Cariño meanwhile highlighted the economic situation of the region, stating that its economy rebounded in 2021 with a 6.3 percent growth compared to 2020 which contracted by 5.3 percent. Agriculture, industry, and services were able to post growths of 3.8 percent, 8.7 percent, and 6.2 percent, respectively, last year. “Nine regions surpassed the national average of 5.7 percent And only four managed to return to pre-pandemic levels and this includes our region. We want to build on these gains and we want to sustain this momentum. We are the second biggest contributor to agriculture and food and the third biggest contributor in accommodation and services as well as energy.”

Reuben Vegafria, Regional Director of the Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry (PCCI) for Northern Mindanao, said “we are looking forward to further enhancing and strengthening our collaborative partnership with DTI, BOI NEDA, and DOST and to become a channel of their mandate to reach out and advocate for more investments and innovation in Northern Mindanao,” as industry participants and chambers of commerce representatives were ably represented from two major cities (CDO and Iligan) and the five provinces comprising the region.

An open forum followed after the presentations and finally, one-on-one consultations. Nine companies participated with interests ranging from agro-tourism, agriculture processing, and data analytics, two on renewable energy, two on housing, and two in manufacturing. END