Providing updates on various development plans and programs being implemented pertaining to agriculture, tourism, investment and other priority economic programs in the region, members of the Economic Development Sectoral Committee of the Regional Development Council convened at the Nueva Segovia Consortium of Cooperatives (NSCC) in Caoayan, Ilocos Sur for the CY 2023 2nd Regular Meeting on June 8, 2023.

Sponsored by the NSCC and presided over by Dr. Divina Quemi, a private sector representative (Economic) and the Vice-Chairperson of the Economic Development Sectoral Committee, the meeting provided an avenue for the various national government agency-members to present the various development plans and programs for 2023-2028 and to provide updates on the accomplishment and monitored projects for the first semester of this year 2023.

Leading the reporting of its development plan is the Department of Tourism delivered by its Consultant Mr. June Damienta who elaborated the major strategies and approaches that the agency will be implementing to boost the tourism industry in the region.

Among the major planned strategies that the DOT will be implementing is the clustering of various tourism facilities in the four provinces and the improvement and development of tourism products that the region has to offer to its visitors.

With the improved products and unique experience that the tourist could get in coming to the region, the DOT will be enhancing its cultural and historical sites including the need for capacity building for tourism frontlines.

In terms of infrastructure support investments, the DOT will be focusing on the gateways in the region with the improvement and expansion of airports and seaports as well as enhancement of highways and expressways.

With the benefits of digital transaction, the DOT upon the suggestion from the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas representative, will be launching the digital platform payment in collaboration with the Department of Trade and Industry for hassle-free and easier transaction of tourists in the region and shall use the google map to legitimize the existence of establishments in the region and for easier access to their locations.

The Cooperative Development Authority is likewise keen on getting the names of these establishments to provide market access on the products of the cooperatives that they are assisting including the farm learning sites that the Agricultural Training Institute (ATI) that would serve as tourism sites for visitors who are coming in the region.

The tourism plan shall be adopted upon integration of the suggestions and recommendations by the member-agencies.

Meanwhile, other national government agencies like the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR), Department of Agriculture (DA), Department of Trade and Industry and the Philippine Statistics Authority reported updates on their projects such as the salt industry, RCEF or Rice Competitiveness Enhancement Fund, Investment promotion capability building and CMCI as well as the Sustainable Development Goals Priority Indicators under the economic sector.

In the same event, the Committee also approved the Economic Component of CY 2022 Regional Development Report, CY 2023 Regional Project Monitoring and Evaluation System (RPMES) Monitoring Plan and the CY 2023 1st Quarter RPMES Report.

The EDSeCom is one of the sector committees under the Regional Development Council chaired by the Department of Agriculture Regional Executive Director, Dr. Annie Q. Bares that sets the direction of economic development in the region through the various national government agencies and private sectors.###