by Secretary Emmanuel F. Piñol

Chairman, Mindanao Development Authority

The immediate economic recovery of Mindanao hinges mainly on profitable agriculture and fisheries.

With thousands of Overseas Workers coming home and millions of employees of small and medium businesses losing jobs, the only sector which could provide income earning opportunities and work is agriculture.

Here are the reasons why:

1. Profitable agriculture and aquaculture will result in the shift in investments from COVID-battered small businesses to food production;
2. Greater investments in agri and aqua sector will create millions of jobs;
3. More investments in agri and aqua sector will mean greater productivity thus ensuring food sufficiency;
4. Greater domestic productivity will boost the economy and trigger Mindanao’s economic recovery.

To achieve this, government does not have to allocate hundreds of billions for the economic recovery.

All that is needed is just to make agriculture and aquaculture profitable by:

1. Regulating the entry of imported goods and encourage local production, especially rice, meat, grains and other products;
2. Assist and support efforts by the agriculture and aquaculture sector to access both domestic and foreign markets.

By doing this, government will create millions of jobs, boost productivity and save billions in the country’s dollar reserves.

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