Press Release
June 11, 2023

Tolentino: Mindanao is key to nation's progress

DAVAO CITY - Senator Francis 'TOL' N. Tolentino emphasized the vital role of the entire Mindanao region to the current and future economic progress of the country.

"Ang Mindanao ay may napakalaking papel sa paglago ng ating ekonomiya at mahalagang bahagi ng pag-unlad sa iba't ibang sektor tulad ng agrikultura, pangingisda, imprastraktura at turismo," said Tolentino during his keynote address during the convention of the League of Municipalities of the Philippines (LMP)--Mindanao chapter in Davao City on Saturday.

Some 500 local chief executives were in attendance in their three-day gathering.

Tolentino cited latest figures from the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA), in which Mindanao's overall Gross Regional Domestic Product (GRDP) has soared to 7.2 percent in 2022--with Davao Region leading the charge (8.15%), followed by Caraga Region (5.9 percent).

The Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM) was also given a special mention by Tolentino as the former conflict-torn region was able to register a 6.6 percent growth on its Gross Domestic Product (GDP) last year.

The senator from Cavite who is also a former president of the League of Cities of the Philippines (LCP) lauded and gave credit to all the Mindanao local chief executives for making the latest feat possible due to their overwhelming commitment in promoting stability and harmony as well as maintaining peace and order in the southern part of the country.

"Ang pagpapabuti ng kalagayan ng kapayapaan at kaayusan sa Mindanao ay isa sa mga pangunahing salik na nagdulot ng pag-unlad sa rehiyon. Kahit na may mga hamon, naipamalas ng Mindanao ang katatagan nito na nagdulot ng mas maraming mga investor at turista sa lugar," said Tolentino.

"Napapatunayan natin na mahalaga po ang pagbubuklod ng mga lokal na pamahalaan at pakikiisa ng national government sa pagharap sa mga hamon ng ating bayan. Sa tulong ng bawat isa, kayang-kaya nating malampasan ang anumang suliranin. Kung kaya't ating pagyamanin ang pagtutulungan at pagkakaisa upang tiyakin ang kaunlaran ng ating mga kababayan sa Mindanao," he added.

During the 18th Congress, Tolentino sponsored major legislations--as former chair of the Senate Committees on Local Government and on Urban Planning, Housing, Development--that were later enacted into laws in helping boost the current economic status of Mindanao Region, particularly the creation of the Metropolitan Davao Development Authority (MDDA) under Republic Act No. 11708 and Republic Act No. 11696 or the Marawi Siege Victims Compensation Act of 2022.

Mindanao has a wealth of natural resources, endowed with lush forests, metallic deposits of lead, zinc, ore, copper, magnetite and gold, and is also the country's food basket.

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