economy expands by 6.8% in 2022
April 27, 2023
TACLOBAN CITY –
Eastern Visayas’ economy expanded by 6.8 percent in 2022, from a 6.0
percent growth in 2021. The economic growth was driven by the
positive performance of the Industry and Services sectors. The main
contributors to the 2022 economic growth were Construction,
Wholesale and retail trade; repair of motor vehicles and
motorcycles, and Financial and insurance activities.
The total value of goods
and services in the region as measured by the Gross Regional
Domestic Product (GRDP) increased to P492.3 billion in 2022 from
P461.1 billion in 2021. The regional economy gained P31.2 billion
during the reference period, surpassing the P469.3 billion 2019
pre-pandemic level (see photo above).
Services grew by 10.4
percent in 2022 from 6.3 percent in 2021. All its sub-industries
posted growths in 2022. The top industries with the highest growths
were tourism-related industries, such as Accommodation and food
service activities (46.3%), Transportation and storage (25.0%), and
Other services (16.3%).
Industry grew by 7.2
percent in 2022, albeit slower than the 8.0 percent growth in 2021.
Among its sub-industries, Mining and quarrying grew fastest at 14.5
percent. Construction followed at 12.7 percent. Electricity, Steam,
Water and Waste Management (ESWW), and Manufacturing likewise grew
by 7.0 percent and 2.9 percent, respectively.
On the other hand,
Agriculture, forestry and fishing (AFF) declined by -6.2 percent in
2022 from 0.1 percent growth in 2021 (see growth rates by industry).
For 2022, Services (47.2%)
and Industry (40.6%) shared the bulk of the region’s economy. AFF
shared the remaining 12.2 percent (see percent share by industry).
Among the three (3) major
industries, Services and Industry contributed 4.8 percentage points
and 2.9 percentage points, respectively, to the region’s 6.8 percent
growth in 2022. Meanwhile, AFF pulled down the growth by -0.9
The report can be accessed
at PSA (psa.gov.ph) and PSA Regional Statistical Services Office
VIII (firstname.lastname@example.org) official websites.
P100M for 7 road projects in E. Samar town
Minority Leader and 4Ps Party-List Representative Marcelino
Libanan, Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) Eastern Visayas
Regional Director Robert Anthony Yu, and Oras, Eastern Samar
Mayor Roy Ador lead the groundbreaking ceremonies for the
₱100-million worth road concreting projects in eight Oras
villages funded under the Agrarian Reform Fund.
JOSE ALSMITH L. SORIA
April 25, 2023
ORAS, Eastern Samar
– More than 10 thousand residents from eight farming villages in
this third-class municipality are now looking forward to the
realization of their longtime dream, a concrete road that would ease
their burden in the conveyance not only of goods, but patients as
On April 11 this year,
House Minority Leader and 4Ps Party-List Representative, Marcelino
Libanan, together with Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) Eastern
Visayas Regional Director Robert Anthony Yu, and Mayor Roy Ador, led
the groundbreaking ceremonies in Barangay Saurong for the seven road
concreting projects traversing Barangays Iwayan, Minap-os, Nadacpan,
Saurong, Agsam, San Eduardo, Alang-alang and Cadi-an.
Yu disclosed that these
road concreting projects have a total budget of P100-million taken
from the Agrarian Reform Fund (ARF), which President Ferdinand
Marcos Jr. restored last year.
Libanan, who hails from
this town, facilitated the release of the said fund. In his message,
he thanked Agrarian Reform Secretary, Conrado Estrella III, for
giving priority to this town.
Yu explained that the role
of the DAR does not end in providing lands to landless farmers
alone, but will continue to work for the provision of necessary
support projects, such as farm-to-market roads, to achieve the
vision of the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program (CARP) which is
an improved quality of life for the agrarian reform beneficiaries (ARBs).
farm-to-market roads is among the nine primary goals of Estrella for
the next six years, Yu added.
Provincial Agrarian Reform
Program Officer II (PARPO II) Danilo Lozada said, the seven
farm-to-market road projects with a combined length of 6.8
kilometers are from Barangay Iwayan to Barangay Minap-os, from
Barangyay Nadacpan to Barangay Saurong, from Barangay Saurong to
Barangay Agsam, from Barangay Agsam to Barangay Iwayan, from
Barangay San Eduardo to Barangay Nadacpan, from Barangay Alang-alang
to Barangay Cadian, and from Barangay Alang-alang to Barangay
Lozada added, all these
are to be implemented under DAR’s Sustainable and Resilient Agrarian
Reform Communities (SuRe ARCs) project.
More than 10 thousand
residents in these remote villages will be directly benefited,
wherein 3,616 of them are agrarian reform beneficiaries.
chairperson, Gloria Lomuntad, said “We are happy that our dream will
soon be realized. We, the residents of Barangay Agsam, are happy
because transporting our products will become easy.
Meanwhile, local media
personality, Daisy Belizar, who grew up in Barangay Cadi-an, the
farthest among the eight villages, shared that Barangays Agsam,
Iwayan, Minap-os, Alang-alang and Cadi-an are upstream villages
situated along the Oras River.
According to her, they use
“sampan” (a motorized boat with no outrigger) in going to the town
proper. It is dangerous for the residents to travel when the water
level rises, especially during bad weather, due to the strong
current, she stressed.
Belizar reminisced that
travel time in the 70s and 80s takes more than four hours to reach
the center of the town. Even with the evolution of engines which
reduced the travel time now by two hours, the concrete road, once
completed, would be the best alternative, she said.
Further, Belizar shared,
it would be easy and safe for students to report to school; patients
can immediately be brought to health facilities; while relief
assistance can be delivered to these areas even if the water in the
river is high, once these road projects are realized.
DTI chief joins
groundbreaking of Pambansang Pabahay Para sa Pilipino Housing (4PH)
DTI-OSEC-Public Relations Unit
April 21, 2023
PULILAN, Bulacan –
On 19 April 2023, President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr., alongside
Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) Secretary Fred Pascual,
Department of Human Settlements and Urban Development (DHSUD)
Secretary Jerry Acuzar, Bulacan Governor Daniel Fernando, and
Pulilan Mayor Maria Rosario Ochoa-Monetejo led the groundbreaking
ceremony of the Pambansang Pabahay Para sa Pilipino Housing (4PH)
Project, a flagship housing program of the Marcos Administration,
which aims to provide Filipino people with decent and affordable
housing, and further narrow the housing gap in the country.
The project in Pulilan
aims to build thirteen (13) low-rise buildings, each with three (3)
floors. This is also expected to have at least 1,044 housing units.
The project revenue value is estimated at P678,600,000, with each
unit amounting to P650,000.
Secretary Pascual shared
that “This housing project is a realization of the President's
efforts to secure more investments as this forms part of the
investment leads secured from the President's recent trip to
Indonesia. We are now reaping the benefits of our several months of
hard work, especially for us in DTI and our Foreign Trade Service
Corps. Through this project, we can help ensure affordable and
decent housing for all Filipinos."
"Like what President
Marcos has conveyed, we have observed that there is a strong market
demand for housing projects because in the coming years, more and
more Filipinos will look into investing their hard-earned money in
real estates, Secretary Pascual added.
The 4PH Pulilan project is
a partnership between iWire Technologies, a company that provides
products and solutions to power the massive revolution of Internet
of Things (IoT) and Emerald Consulting & Realty Corporation (ECRC)
Philippines, as well as other local contractors and the Pulilan
Local Government Unit (LGU).
Secretary Pascual also
said that “The 4PH project is part of the Administration’s priority
to Build Better and More infrastructure. The DTI will remain
steadfast in supporting the Philippine government not only in
enabling a healthy business environment for foreign businesses like
iWire but also in providing and meeting the needs of every
Biliran ARBO gets
support from Naval LGU
JOSE ALSMITH L. SORIA
April 20, 2023
NAVAL, Biliran – An
Agrarian Reform Beneficiaries Organization (ARBO) based in this town
thanked the local government unit (LGU) for assuring them the
support they will need as they undergo Farm Business School (FBS)
under the Agrarian Reform Beneficiaries Development and
Sustainability Program (ARBDSP) of the Department of Agrarian Reform
lawyer Mario Lydinno Opeña, who was authorized by Mayor Gretchen
Stephanie Espina to represent her during the buy-in session held on
Monday afternoon at the conference room of the office of the mayor,
promised the officers of the Agrarian Reform Beneficiaries
Association of Lucso-on (ARBALuc) of the LGU’s support.
During the buy-in session,
Agrarian Reform Program Officer I (ARPO I) and FBS coordinator for
this province, Christian Villacrusis, presented the concept of FBS
to the LGU to solicit the support of the latter to augment the
limited resources that will be provided by the DAR and for the
ARBALuc to sustain the gains of the Program.
In the conduct of the FBS,
according to Juanita Romano, FBS regional coordinator, the
participating ARBO members will undergo 25 sessions wherein they
will be taught on how to be a successful farmer-entrepreneur; how to
conduct market survey and assess current farm situation; how to make
farm production and marketing plans as well as financial plan; group
marketing and buying; benchmarking; value addition; farm
profitability, among others.
There will be a
combination of classroom instruction and actual application, which
will require the farmers to use farm machineries in developing their
1,000 square-meters demo farm, Romano stressed.
Opeña committed the use of
the LGU-owned tractor free of charge when ARBALuc president, Eddie
Elarde, mentioned the said farm machinery as among the support
assistances they want to request from the LGU.
Aside from the free use of
LGU-owned farm machineries, Opeña added that the LGU can also
provide seeds, farm inputs, such as tools, and can help in the
marketing of ARBALuc’s products.
To formalize the
agreements reached in this session, DAR, LGU-Naval and ARBALuc will
enter a memorandum of agreement to be scheduled before the FBS would
take off in May this year.
School gets new classrooms
GISSELLE G. PARUNGAO
April 17, 2023
CALBAYOG CITY – A
one-storey two-classroom school building was recently built in
Ilijan Elementary School, Sto. Niño, Samar with a total contract
amount of P5.64 million in convergence with the Department of
Where a make-shift
building made of light materials that was once used as the SBM
(School Based Management) Hub and library, is now a new structure
which has a PWD ramp with guard rails, hand washing area, comfort
rooms enclosed in each classroom together with the prescribed paint
which will be enjoyed by seven teachers and 144 pupils of the
One of the classrooms will
be used as the faculty room that can serve as a venue for meetings,
conferences and a place where visitors can be accommodated. The
other room will be used for two purposes, a library and a computer
room. The school has been chosen as one of the beneficiaries of the
DepEd Computerization Program (DCP) thus, this room will be very
useful in terms of doing research and computer classes, said
Marianito Jackson, School Principal.
This additional classrooms
give more space for school-related activities and plays a vital role
in building a learning and positive environment.
ruling on rape: a ruling for rapists, not victims – Gabriela
April 4, 2023
QUEZON CITY –
National women’s alliance GABRIELA slammed the Supreme Court’s
recently uploaded ruling “fine-tuning” the criminal act of rape. In
the SC decision, an anatomical threshold where the perpetrator’s
penis “penetrates the cleft of the labia minora” must be proven
beyond reasonable doubt in order for an act to be considered rape.
“The dignity of a woman
does not rest on a vagina. By creating ‘gradations’ between ‘rape’
and ‘attempted rape’ on account of anatomical thresholds, the
Supreme Court is effectively reducing the dignity of women to our
body parts. It forgets that whether a woman is forced into acts of
vaginal penetration, oral sex, or penetration through foreign
objects, the point is that such acts constitute grave violation of
the woman’s dignity. Rape is rape. Rape is indignity. No matter the
nature or specifics, rape is a violation of a person’s humanity,”
blasted Clarice Palce, GABRIELA’s Secretary-General.
“We also urge the Supreme
Court to remember that this ruling is set against the backdrop of a
country where rape victims struggle as it is to find the courage to
speak up and seek justice. With this ruling, women would now have
the added burden of very specifically demonstrating beyond
reasonable doubt that her rapist penetrated ‘into her labia minora’
for the court to consider it to be rape. We have no doubts that
there would be even more rape victims forced into silence following
this decision. Simply and frankly worded, this is a ruling that
favors only perpetrators, not rape victims,” raised Palce.
According to GABRIELA, the
Supreme Court’s ruling, which bases its arguments purely on anatomy,
poses a danger for rape victims on technical grounds: “There are
plenty of women who either do not possess vaginas as in the case of
transgender women, women with undeveloped genitals, intersex women,
and many more who may face the realities of sexual violence but who
clearly would not even be considered rape victims under this
ruling,” Palce lamented.
“The Supreme Court’s
decision reeks of the complete inability to grasp what makes rape a
heinous crime – something that no amount of overdetailing on the
nature of the act based on body parts and crass anatomy will ever
capture,” concluded Palce.
18 Filipino food
exporters bag over $50M export deals in Gulfood 2023
April 3, 2023
PASAY CITY – CITEM
successfully showcased PH's top healthy and halal-certified products
in one of the world's biggest food fair.
The Philippines generated
$50.65 million export sales, surpassing its target by over 300
percent, in the world’s largest annual food and beverage expo,
Gulfood 2023 at the Dubai World Trade Center in Dubai, United Arab
Under the FOODPhilippines'
banner, 18 food exporters showcased premium halal-certified,
high-value and innovative food products, namely fresh and processed
fruits and vegetables, processed marine products, ethnic and gourmet
products, non-alcoholic beverages, confectionery, biscuits, and
pastries, and other food and beverage categories.
They generated 400 trade
buyer inquiries in this year’s expo, maintaining strong relations
with regular buyers while also establishing leads with new
The Center for
International Trade Expositions and Missions’ (CITEM) Executive
Director, Dr. Edward L. Fereira, Ph. D. expressed his delight over
the outcome. “We’re extremely proud that our homegrown manufacturers
and exporters exceeded our target generated sales and trade buyers.
With the help of our Filipino exhibitors, the Philippine
participation in Gulfood 2023 has been successful. We will continue
to strengthen the Philippines’ presence in the Middle East and
Africa (MEA) by promoting Philippine food products and ingredients,
especially halal food products, and supporting Filipino exhibitors
in international trade shows.”
Gulfood is the largest
annual food and beverage sourcing event in the world, with 48
percent of exhibitors using Gulfood as an entry point into the
market. According to the Business Research Company, the global halal
food market value increased to $1.5 billion in 2023 and is expected
to grow to $2.5 billion in 2027.
The Philippine pavilion
showcased fresh and processed fruits and vegetables, processed
marine products, ethnic and gourmet products, non-alcoholic
beverages, confectionery, biscuits, and pastries, and other food and
participation in Gulfood is critical to increasing our share of the
halal food market. As we continuously tap the large population of
Filipinos in the United Arab Emirates, we take advantage of the
Filipino consumers' behavior and influence in our bid to bring
Filipino food to the mainstream market,” said Fereira.
participation in Gulfood is part of the country’s efforts to boost
its food exports and help local micro, small, and medium enterprises
(MSMEs) expand their global market. The country’s participation in
Gulfood organized by CITEM, in partnership with PTIC-Dubai, is part
of the Department of Trade and Industry-Trade Promotions Group’s
(DTI-TPG) concierge of services and promotional efforts in the Gulf
Cooperation Council (GCC) states.
dream turns into reality, thanks PBBM, DAR
hauling trucks were turned over to the Canmarating, Odiongan,
Pagsang-an, Sulpa Irrigators Association (COPS-IA) in Abuyog,
Leyte and the Barangay Agutayan Farmers Association (BAFA)
in Hilongos, Leyte under the Department of Agrarian Reform’s
Sustainable and Resilient Agrarian Reform Communities (SuRe
JOSE ALSMITH L. SORIA
April 1, 2023
TACLOBAN CITY – In
his inaugural message on June 30 last year, President Ferdinand
Marcos Jr. repeatedly said “Pangarap nyo ay pangarap ko!” as he
stressed what every Filipino should expect in the next six years
under his administration.
On Monday, Rodrigo Alumbro,
president of the Canmarating, Odiongan, Pagsang-an, Sulpa Irrigators
Association (COPS-IA), said “Pangarap lang po namin (ito), ngunit
ngayon nagkatotoo na,” as he expressed their organization’s
gratitude to the President and the Department of Agrarian Reform
(DAR) for the latest assistance extended to them, a six-wheeler
On March 27 this year at
the DAR Regional Office in this city, Director Ronald Gareza of the
Bureau of Agrarian Reform Beneficiaries Development (BARBD) at DAR
Central Office, represented agrarian reform secretary, Conrado
Estrella III, in turning over two 15-feet dropside six-wheeler
hauling trucks to two agrarian reform beneficiaries organizations (ARBOs)
Both vehicles have a
combined amount of P3.998 million taken from the agrarian reform
Gareza disclosed that the
present administration restored back the ARF to finance assistance
projects for the ARBs.
For this year, Gareza
further disclosed, P7.5 billion had been earmarked under ARF to
implement the Sustainable and Resilient Agrarian Reform Communities
(SuRe ARCs) project.
COPS-IA and the Barangay
Agutayan Farmers Association (BAFA) based in the towns of Abuyog and
Hilongos, respectively, are the initial recipients of the SuRe ARCs
project in Eastern Visays.
Gareza explained to the
recipients that the SuRe ARCs project is being implemented purposely
to finance projects for rice, corn and coconut areas.
According to him, “In SuRe
ARCs, we are contemplating na magkaroon ng magandang negosyo ang
ating mga ARBO na binigyan nito.”
“You will be operating as
a competent organization that can handle at least 50 hectares
plantation in order for you to go into successful business,” Gareza
told the recipient ARBOs.
COPS-IA covers 181
hectares of rice fields, but only 130 hectares can be reached by the
irrigation system, said Alumbro, while BAFA president, Vicenta Jaray
disclosed that their organization covers more than 60 hectares of
Aside from the hauling
truck, Gareza, assisted by DAR Eastern Visayas Regional Director
Robert Anthony Yu, also turned over four units of deshelling
machines with a total worth of P600 thousand to BAFA for their copra
Jaray said as she thanked
DAR officials, “Masayang-masaya kami dahil nakakatulong kami sa mga
farmers namin lalo ngayon na ang labor ay mahal.”
“Yung truck naman,
malaking tulong ito sa amin dahil hindi nakakapasok yung malaking
truck sa niyugan,” she added.
Meanwhile, COPS-IA was
advised to convert into a cooperative to be able to engage in rice
64 So. Leyte
agrarian beneficiaries benefit P3.6M credit assistance
Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) reports 64 agrarian
reform beneficiaries (ARBs) in Southern Leyte were able to
avail of the credit assistance program it offers thru the
Land Bank of the Philippines (LBP). Releases now reached
JOSE ALSMITH L. SORIA
March 29, 2023
MAASIN CITY, Southern
Leyte – About 64 agrarian reform beneficiaries (ARBs) from this
province were able to avail of the credit assistance program offered
by the Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) thru the Land Bank of the
Philippines (LBP) since 2021.
This was disclosed by Mark
Obregon, DAR Southern Leyte Provincial Office’s monitoring and
evaluation (M & E) coordinator, during the Local Project Management
Committee (LPMC) meeting held in this city last week.
Based on the report from
LBP, more than P3.6 million had already been released by the bank to
the said ARBs under DAR’s Accessible Fund for Delivery to ARBs
(AFFORD-ARBs) credit assistance program.
Obregon added that the
borrowers used the amount as capital for their abaca and cacao
On the same occasion,
Provincial Agrarian Reform Program Officer II (PARPO II) Roderick
Rances encouraged the ARBs who were invited to the said meeting to
avail of the different credit assistance programs offered by DAR
which has minimal interest rates.
Rances said, this is an
opportunity for the ARBs who have not recovered yet from the
devastation of Typhoon Odette which hit this province in December
Microfinance (ACMF) coordinator, Victoria Ligtas, presented to the
ARBs, who are looking for fund sources to finance their farm
operations or livelihood activities, the three available agri-credit
assistance programs of DAR; the AFFORD-ARBs, the Expanded Assistance
to Restore and Install Sustainable Enterprise (E-ARISE), and the
Accessible Loans for Empowered, Resilient and Transform - Agrarian
Reform Beneficiaries Organizations (ALERT-ARBOs).
Ligtas stressed that
AFFORD-ARBs and E-ARISE can be availed individually, while ALERT-ARBOs
can be availed thru the ARBO they are affiliated with.
LBP’s account officer,
Noreen Joy Golong, also stressed during the meeting that the bank no
longer ask for collateral in availing the AFFORD-ARBs loan. However,
the borrower must not have any other insurance application with the
Philippine Crop Insurance Company (PCIC), because the proceeds they
will get from PCIC will serve as their collateral.
Meanwhile, PCIC insurance
underwriter, Donnie Saavedra, shared that they conduct actual
inspection to determine if the applicant deserves appropriate
Further, DAR Regional
Office ACMF coordinator, Rosemarie Arreglo, praised the ARB-borrowers
of this province for their good standing as no one is reported to be
On the other hand, lawyer
Melani Brilata still cautioned the would-be borrowers to be
responsible in their obligations to the bank because it will affect
other borrowers as well.