DAVAO CITY, Philippines – Northern Mindanao's Regional Development Council (RDC-10) recently expressed its support for the implementation of the Mindanao Development Corridors, citing it as an innovative strategy that responds to the development needs of the island-region.

In a resolution signed on March 19, 2015, RDC-10 members and stakeholders are enjoined to ensure complementation, synchronization, and convergence of resources with the existing development and physical framework plans, and other ongoing initiatives and emerging trends in the country that affect Mindanao.

"We are fully supportive of initiatives that promote sustainable development in Northern Mindanao, and anchoring our efforts to the Mindanao Development Corridors is one of the efficient ways of achieving our goals," said RDC 10 Chair and Lanao del Norte Governor Mohamad Khalid Dimaporo.

He added the Northern Mindanao Development Corridor (NMDC) has potentials of developing into a world-class industrial and services center, owing to its public infrastructure that is suited for industrialization.

"The presence of eco-zones and the location of industrial and agribusiness enterprises in the region, coupled with a strong agricultural sector and a budding business process outsourcing industry makes NMDC a key player in Mindanao's socioeconomic development," said Dimaporo.

The NMDC comprises the province of Misamis Oriental, Misamis Occidental, Bukidnon, Camiguin, Lanao del Norte, Lanao del Sur, Agusan del Norte, and Surigao del Norte. Among the major programs and projects identified under the NMDC are the Panguil Bay Bridge, which will provide uninterrupted access from Cagayan de Oro and Iligan cities to Tangub, Oroquieta, and Ozamiz cities and the rest of Misamis Occidental and the Zamboanga Peninsula; the development of the airports in Ozamiz, Surigao, and Laguindingan; the construction of the Northern Mindanao High Standard Highway, and the construction of the 1st segment of the Mindanao Railway System.

The Mindanao Development Authority (MinDA), through the Mindanao Peace and Development Framework Plan or the Mindanao 2020, adopts the Mindanao Development Corridors as a key spatial strategy aimed to improve infrastructure, establish connectivity, and spur the development of growth clusters within the island-region, allowing it to achieve balanced and inclusive growth among its regions.

The corridors approach divides the island economy of Mindanao into three development corridors namely the Northern Mindanao Development Corridor (NMDC), Southern Mindanao Development Corridor (SMDC), and Western Mindanao Development Corridor (WMDC).

"Our regional development councils and local government units know their territory better, which make them among our strongest allies in Mindanao's development planning and in integrating the corridors initiative," said MinDA Chairperson Luwalhati Antonino.

Antonino added the initiative also aims to position Mindanao as a single, integrated economy that is able to leverage and fully participate in economic groupings such as the BIMP-EAGA, ASEAN, and the rest of the global economic communities.

"This strategy will transcend regional boundaries in terms of commodity flow and industry integration which will make regions in Mindanao more commercially viable," she said.

RDC 10 joins Region 9, 12, and the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao in supporting the Mindanao corridors program. #

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