Western Visayas targets up to 11% GRDP growth

Posted on April 05, 2017

ILOILO CITY -- The National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) regional office here reported a steady rise in the economy of Western Visayas, and is targeting a gross regional domestic product (GRDP) growth rate of 9.8% to 11% by 2022.

Tourism continues to be one of the top contributors to the economy of Western Visayas provinces.
In her State of the Region Report during the recent Regional Development Council (RDC-6) first quarter meeting last month, NEDA-6 Director Ro-Ann A. Bacal reported on positive growth of all provinces in the region: Aklan, Antique, Capiz, Iloilo, and Guimaras.

Ms. Bacal cited the region’s 8.3% GRDP growth rate in 2015, which was the second fastest nationwide after the Bicol Region; a decreasing trend in inflation for all commodity items from 2.3% in 2015 to only 1.9% in 2016; and a higher employment rate of 95.1% last year from 94.6% in 2015.

At the meeting, RDC-6 also approved the Western Visayas Regional Development Plan (RDP) for 2017-2022, which specifies the 2022 target GRDP growth rate of 9.8% to 11%.

The council said this could be achieved through an increase in agri-fishery production with improved productivity and profitability; development of tourism circuits and destinations; pursuit of research and development innovations; enhancing the efficiency of public infrastructure; promoting investment, trade and exports; and protecting the environment.

The RDC also endorsed the P73.93 billion proposed budget for national government agencies and state universities and colleges (SUCs) in the region in 2018.

The budget covers funding for 23 line agencies totalling P66.78 billion and P7.15 billion for 11 SUCs for Tiers 1 and 2.

Department of Budget and Management (DBM) Regional Director Alfonso B. Bedonia said this proposed outlay will be distributed to the central office of the various departments for approval and submission to the DBM main office.

“Each regional office will submit its proposed budget to the Central Office. Then the Central Office will consolidate the proposal of all regions to come up with a budget to be submitted to DBM,” he said.

Mr. Bedonia clarified that the proposed budget does not include Negros Occidental, which is now part of the Negros Island Region. -- Louine Hope U. Conserva