DAVAO CITY — President Rodrigo Roa Duterte on Tuesday, February 19, called on its neighboring countries to unite to overcome economic slowdown and security challenges in the region.
The Chief Executive made such call as he graced the 9th anniversary of Mindanao Development Authority (MinDA) and the 25th anniversary of the Brunei Darussalam-Indonesia-Malaysia-Philippines East ASEAN Growth Area (BIMP-EAGA) held at the SMX Convention Center in Lanang.
“We have to band together. The world is changing, including the economy. It could go either bad or very bad or it could go well… and I hope we can survive it,” President Duterte said in his speech.
Duterte also pushed for closer economic cooperation to create more viable opportunities in trade and investment, transportation, agri-business, tourism, energy, and environmental protection and management, among others, not only in the region but also in the entire BIMP-EAGA corridor.
He also assured that the country would remain resolute in building the capacity of our local government units to deliver excellent public service and promote good governance, especially in Mindanao.
“Together, let us pursue more progressive and inclusive strategies for growth in the region as we work towards the advancement of every Mindanawon,” President Duterte said.
The President also urged the BIMP-EAGA countries to be vigilant in combatting lawless elements and terrorism, especially in patrolling our common seas.
Meanwhile, President Duterte lauded MinDA for the continuing success of its mission to build a stronger and more progressive Mindanao.
“As the primary coordinating agency in the affairs of the Brunei, Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines –East ASEAN Growth Area, you have played an invaluable role in the implementation of viable socio-economic programs in the region, especially as we enter a new period of peace and development with the ratification of the Bangsamoro Organic Law,” he said.
President Duterte noted that MinDA enabled the institution of effective mechanisms for socio-civic endeavors, launched political education campaigns, and established agro-economic zones across the nation through facilitating the active participation of all relevant sectors.
“Indeed, these efforts highlight the importance of our collaborative efforts in realizing lasting peace and sustainable growth across Mindanao,” he said.
As the nation’s development landscape reaches a new level of progress, President Duterte counts on the unwavering commitment of the institution in enhancing the people’s lives through peace and development.