PNoy says national gov’t will focus on development of agri, infras, tourism in EV
ISABEL, Leyte—President Aquino said the national government will focus on the development of agriculture, infrastructure and tourism here in the region as these contribute on the country’s economy.
Pres. Aquino said that three sectors have great impact on the local economy and are expected to create jobs and improve the lives of the people in the region.
“We are focusing on key development sectors, particularly the coconut industry. For example, Leyte ranks first in terms of coconut production in Eastern Visayas and that would greatly contribute to the region’s economy,” Aquino said.
Aquino particularly cited the export of coconut water, which Eastern Visayas could heavily contribute to the growing global demand for the product.
“In 2009, the Philippines exported 483,862 liters of coconut water. In 2010, it went up to 1,807,583 liters. Last year, we have exported 16,756,500 liters of coconut water. We have seen its potential based on strong demand of other countries,” Aquino said.
The President also assured to prioritize palay, abaca and sugar production and the fishing industry in the region.
Aquino also lauded the local tourism office for the increasing tourist arrivals of 365,000 last year, the highest visitor count so far in Eastern Visayas.
“In 2011 until 2012, the national government has allocated about P2.6 billion alone or infrastructure development in Leyte. These projects have been lined up and some were bid out and issued notices to proceed,” Aquino said.
He mentioned the construction of the Albuera-Burauen road, Balagnon-Libas and Mataraga bridges, and the rehabilitation of the Maasin and Tacloban airports.“Bidding for the Tacloban Airport was conducted last Sept. 24, and by December, we expect the issuance of notice to proceed and by January of 2013,actual construction would start,” Aquino said.
He said the rehabilitation of the region’s premier airport will mean greater access to Eastern Visayas and wich would help develop the region’s tourism industry. (REYAN L. ARINTO)
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