Feb 032013

MANILA, Philippines – The Philippine government is keen on developing Mindanao amid positive news on the country’s economy, Budget Secretary Florencio Abad said on Sunday ahead of the 2013 Philippine Development Forum.

“Unlocking Mindanao’s potential is high up in the administration’s list of priorities. Already, the region is poised to make great strides in pursuing its socio-economic goals, given the wealth of its resources and its remarkable growth prospects. The Bangsamoro peace agreement has also encouraged greater confidence in the region, particularly in areas where armed conflict once undermined efforts at community development or commercial progress,” Abad said.

The country’s global development partners, state leaders, civil society groups and other stakeholders are expected to attend this year’s PDF in Davao City.

“It’s no coincidence that the 2013 PDF is being held in Davao, considering the administration’s aim of enhancing Mindanao’s growth capacity and invigorating the region’s agri-fishery and tourism industries, as well as other fast-growing sectors,” Abad said.

He added that the forum will be crucial in bridging the Aquino administration’s development goals with the objectives of the country’s development partners.

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“With the Philippine economy performing very well, we need to ensure that the gains we’ve made will actually be felt by all Filipinos. Together with our development partners, we can work toward creating more growth dividends for Mindanao, thus empowering the region and giving it ample room for socio-economic progress,” Abad said.

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