GENERAL SANTOS City’s public and private sectors are aiming to boost trade and tourism ties in the country’s northern island following Monday’s launch of direct flights to and from Clark International in Pampanga. “When we took off this morning during the Clark-GenSan inaugural flight, that was just the beginning. We hope to provide more economic opportunities, jobs, and investments for GenSan,” Mayor Ronnel C. Rivera said during the Business Matching Session for Trade and Tourism with Pampanga’s business community. The meeting was held after the inaugural flight from General Santos landed in Clark. The chartered flights, initially set on a twice-a-week schedule, are served by Leading Edge Air Services Corp. “The business matching sessions saw new economic opportunities for GenSan’s food, tourism, agricultural, manufacturing, and other related industries,” Mr. Rivera said in a post on his social media page. In September last year, General Santos City signed partnership agreements with three Pampanga local governments — the cities of Angeles, Mabalacat and San Fernando — and Clark Development Corp. to promote business linkages. The initiative is part of the United States Agency for International Development’s Strengthening Urban Resilience for Growth project.