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Monday, 31 July 2023

MinDA, Mindanao biz leaders laud PBBM’s lifting state of nat'l emergency

DAVAO CITY – The Mindanao Development Authority (MinDA) and Mindanao leaders lauded the decision of President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. in lifting the State of National Emergency on Account of Lawless Violence in Mindanao on Tuesday (July 25, 2023).

Mindanao Development Authority (MinDA) Secretary Maria Belen S. Acosta along with the various Mindanao leaders thanked the President for heeding their call through a letter dated June 26, 2023, requesting his office to issue a policy to revert Proclamation No. 55 s. 2016 putting Mindanao under a State of National Emergency of Lawless Violence due to the presence of various groups of perpetrators in the island region.

While the said policy, according to Acosta, provided concrete measures to safeguard the peace and security in the island and the daily lives of every Mindanawon, it also critically hampered other equally-important economic activities and opportunities, particularly tourist arrivals and investments in Mindanao.

“MinDA’s advocacy to request the President to lift Proclamation 55 was a key result and recommendation of the Mindanao Development Forum in May this year stemming from the strong push of key participants, particularly the private sector and chambers. These include Joint Foreign Chambers, the Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry (PCCI) - Mindanao, and local chambers of different regions,” she added.


The MinDA chairperson cited that the Mindanawons have seen and felt the immeasurable impacts of Proclamation No. 55 and COVID-19 on sustaining the socio-economic development across the island region.


“Specifically, the driving point that the business communities are saying they are finding difficulty in elevating the attractiveness of the island for investment and travel, amidst a generally peaceful and safe Mindanao,’ Acosta added.


The MDF, she said, also paved the way for the National Intelligence Coordinating Agency, Philippine National Police, Armed Forces of the Philippines, Office of the Presidential Adviser on Peace, Reconciliation and Unity (OPAPRU), and the rest of the public safety and security sector to convincingly present to Official Development Assistance (ODA) officials and representatives that there is no more lawless violence in Mindanao. 


“In addition, the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) also strongly supported this policy initiative of MinDA. Together, we can now look forward to welcoming more tourists, attracting investments, and creating better economic opportunities - making Mindanao truly a fulfilled promise,” Acosta added.


Meanwhile, Tony Peralta, chair of the European Chamber of Commerce for Southern Mindanao region and Honorary Consul, Embassy of Finland to Mindanao, congratulated MinDA for the efforts they have done in making the lifting of the Proclamation No. 55 possible.

“We look forward to a very successful partnership with your office as we continue to change the image and reputation of Mindanao,” he added.  (MinDA/PIA-Caraga)