DAVAO CITY – Mindanao Development Authority (MinDA) is gearing up for a Mindanao trade and business mission to Papua New Guinea slated on September 3-5. 

This emerged following a recent meeting of MinDA Secretary Emmanuel Piñol with Papua New Guinea Ambassador to the Philippines Betty Palaso and Vice Minister Mannaseh Makiba for potential export of Mindanao premium rice and other areas of partnerships. 

“I invited our friends from Papua New Guinea because one of the first projects that we will undertake is to initially export premium Mindanao rice to Papua New Guinea,” Piñol said during his assumption of office as MinDA Secretary this week. 

Piñol is also looking at Solomon Islands and Singapore as country destinations of Mindanao’s high-quality premium rice from Banaybanay in Davao Oriental, North Cotabato, Zamboanga del Sur, and Zamboanga Sibugay. 

“We aim to open potential trade link between Mindanao and Papua New Guinea through our quality rice and other premium agricultural products,” according to the Piñol, who previously served as Agriculture Secretary at the start of the Duterte administration.

Piñol also cited that the trade mission will include investment forum and business-to-business networking with Papua New Guinea key private sector players. 

Possible importation of timber from Papua New Guinea to Mindanao is also another discussion during the mission to cater the needs of Mindanao construction and real-estate industries. Aside from timber, Mindanao sources out tuna and other fishery products in the area. 

Some Mindanao vegetables and poultry products are likewise included in the list of Pinol’s priority agri-products to be exported to Papua New Guinea. 

This trade mission is one of the series of international business roadshows of MinDA in partnership with other key national agencies to promote Mindanao economic potentials in the larger international market. 

“MinDA will also eye the possibility of spearheading establishment of a direct flight between Davao and Port Morseby, Papua New Guinea as one of the agenda in the mission once trade link is materialized and sustained,” Piñol said. 

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