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MinDA, Lanao Sur crafts agri-dev’t blueprint

February 20, 2021

DAVAO CITY - The Mindanao Development Authority (MinDA) launched Thursday (Feb. 18), the Lanao del Sur Integrated Program for Agricultural Development (LIPAD), which aims to turn one of the country's poorest provinces into a major agricultural production area. Secretary Emmanuel Piñol said in a public post on Friday, that the LIPAD Master Plan will identify the potentials and design programs to fully develop the province with fertile soil and two major inland bodies of water - the 34,000-hectare Lake Lanao and the 1,011-hectare Lake Dapao. Among the programs that will be undertaken as part of the LIPAD Master Plan crafting are the establishment of a digital database for the province's agriculture and fisheries sector, including the geo-tagging and satellite mapping of the production areas and strategic programs and interventions to protect the two major lakes, Lake Lanao and Lake Dapao. Also, Rice Industry Development Program focusing on the potential production areas, including the Basak Region, and establishing facilities for a complete value chain, Cattle Industry Development Program, especially in areas where forage is available and climate is ideal, given the huge demand for beef during special Muslim holidays like Eid' Adha and Eid'l Fit'r, and Small Ruminants Development Program, especially goat raising for dairy and meat because of the cultural practice of celebrating special family events like the birth in the family, which is celebrated with the slaughter of two goats. Sustainable tree farming, fruit tree farming, and Bamboo farming programs in areas around the lakes for agricultural production and environmental protection and duckery and fish farming in both lakes to increase family income are also included in the program. “During the launching yesterday, I assumed Gov. Adiong and the other Lanao del Sur officials of MinDA's commitment to assist in developing the potentials of Lanao del Sur and in erasing the stigma of being labeled as the poorest province in the country,” Piñol said. Lanao del Sur Governor Mamintal Alonto Adiong, Jr., Cong. Ansarrudin Adiong and Wao Mayor Elvino Balicao, Jr. joined MinDA officials in the symbolic launching of the program in an abandoned airfield built in the 1970s.

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MinDA urges LGUs to invest in food production

February 19, 2021

DAVAO CITY - The Mindanao Development Authority (MinDA) has started a campaign to assist Mindanao local government units in identifying investment opportunities, especially in food production, to provide local jobs, ensure food sufficiency and boost the country's economic recovery.   “Yesterday, MinDA presented to officials of M'lang, North Cotabato the proposal to establish a modern hog-breeding facility in the town to supply the whole province with the needed fatteners,” Secretary Emmanuel Piñol said Thursday.   The facility, he said is estimated to cost about PHP200 million, and is part of the Mindanao Livestock Industry Development Program initiated by the agency to revive the hog industry badly battered by the unabated spread of the African Swine Fever.   “During my presentation of the program before the Sangguniang Bayan of M'lang chaired by my younger brother, Vice Mayor Joselito Piñol, I emphasized that aside from ensuring food security for the town, the modern hog breeding facility will open livelihood opportunities for the people of the town,” he added.   Piglets produced in the breeding facility could be fattened in the community level "Hogstel" and later processed in the town's abattoir.   Farmers of the town will also benefit from the program as the town operates a recently completed feed mill which could process feeds for the hog program.   “Following my presentation, the municipal council passed a resolution asking MinDA to help the town craft an Agro-industrial Master Plan which would include the hog industry. Next week, MinDA will submit to M'lang Mayor Russel Abonado the detailed proposal for the hog breeding facility and the "Hogstel" Program,” Piñol added.   Once approved by the Municipal Council, he said MinDA will engage its banking partner, the Development Bank of the Philippines (DBP), to provide the needed funds for the implementation of the project.   MinDA had earlier designed a program called the "Islands of Hope" which will identify areas which had not been affected by the African Swine Fever (ASF) for hog production.   In these areas, hog raising facilities called "Hogstels" will be established to serve as a common service facility for erstwhile backyard hog raisers to ensure bio-security. #

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Customs seizes P125M worth of cigarettes from China

February 19, 2021

THE Bureau of Customs-10 (BOC-10) has confiscated imported cigarettes estimated to be worth P125 million, according to Oliver Valiente, chief of the Customs Intelligence and Investigation Service (CIIS).      Valiente said they have been monitoring shipments from China leading to the confiscation of at least five container vans containing cigarettes. Each container has an approximate value of P25 million.      The first batch, three container vans, was detected by the Customs police sometime last week and the second shipment arrived at the Mindanao Container Terminal sub-port on Feb. 14, he said.      Valiente placed the estimated value of the cargo at P50 million per container van, although the BOC-10 will still determine the actual worth of the cigarettes.      He said they were ordered to monitor the vessels containing the cigarettes, whose brands were Marvels and Two Moons.      The latest cargo, he said, stopped by at the ports of Manila and Davao before proceeding to the MCT. It was subjected to a spot check on Feb. 16.      “We were able to track the vessel, and upon verification it was positive that the container vans contained cigarettes,” Valiente said.      He said the cigarettes were wrongfully declared as pieces of furniture.      Valiente identified the cargo’s consignee as LMRC said to be based in Davao City, but he said it could be possible that the group that smuggled the cigarettes has employed dummy consignees.      John Simon, BOC-10 district collector, said the information of the arrival of the illegal goods was obtained through a bilateral cooperation between the Philippines and China. “It was a government-to-government coordination that led to the detection of illegal cigarettes. We consider every information that we receive as important and worth to be verified,” Simon, who has just received an award from the United Nations, said.

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Davaoeños can shop conveniently from home: Choice Mart is now on foodpanda

February 18, 2021

Through the partnership between foodpanda and Davao City’s homegrown shopping center NCCC Supermarket Choice Mart, Davaoeños can now experience having their groceries delivered at the tap of an app.    With 11 Choice Mart branches that offer everyday essentials, fresh produce, and other merchandise, foodpanda is set to satisfy the on-demand shopping needs of Davaoeños with an average delivery time of 30 minutes.   Timely stay-at-home service During the official launch of Choice Mart in the foodpanda platform held last January 27, foodpanda Regional Sales Team Lead for Mindanao, Thomas Justin Pamintuan, highlighted the value of the strategic partnership, “foodpanda’s partnership with Davao’s largest grocery store chain shows that we, at foodpanda, always strive to bring quality and the best selection of shops or restaurant on-board to satisfy what our customers really want.”   “This partnership is very timely and beneficial especially for super busy moms and individuals who are working from home. It's very convenient to shop online through foodpanda for your pantry refills. It is also perfect for family bonding at home as you can just order your snacks while you're streaming your favorite shows,” said NCCC Associate Vice President for Marketing Melanie Bacala.   For Alexene Kaye Umpad, foodpanda City Manager for Davao, Panabo, and Tagum, it is all about offering a complete shopping experience. “With 11 Choice Mart branches available on foodpanda shops, Davaoeños have faster access to its wide product assortment as we provide our customers with a new and more convenient venue for grocery shopping. It is also a safer way to shop, with the contactless delivery option and the utmost care that foodpanda riders put into their safety measures.   Easy on the budget Aside from the fact that shoppers no longer have to spend on gas and parking or on their transportation fees, ordering at Choice Mart through foodpanda can also mean smart savings for savvy shoppers. As a way to celebrate the partnership with Choice Mart, new foodpanda shops customers can get up to 30% off on their purchases with a minimum order of P100 by using the code SHOPCHOICEMART until March 31, 2021.   Experience the convenience and safety of online grocery shopping by downloading the foodpanda app for free on iOS or Google Play Store. 

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Globe announces full year 2020 results

February 17, 2021

AS a testament to Globe’s commitment to provide internet access to all Filipinos, the Company invested a total of ₱60.3 billion in capex in 2020, surpassing last year’s record level spending by 18%. Also, 2020 capex represented 41% of gross service revenues and 82% of EBITDA. Majority of the capex or about 86% went to data-related requirements to meet the growing data demands of Filipinos nationwide. Full year 2021 cash capex is expected to reach a new record of ₱70.0 billion to execute the Company’s network roll-out strategy that includes aggressive cell site builds, upgrade of all its sites to Fourth Generation/Long-Term Evolution technology (4G/LTE), and fast-tracking the fiberization of Filipino homes nationwide. This record-breaking capital expenditure supports Globe’s continuous modernization of its network to make 5G as well as fiber technology available to customers in more areas in the country. Globe’s massive network investments likewise prove its strong support of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, particularly UN SDG No. 9 which highlights the roles of infrastructure and innovation as crucial drivers of economic growth and development. Despite the continuing impact of the Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic, Globe was able to build close to 1,300 new cell sites or cell towers, up from 1,100 the previous year. Also, the aggressive modernization of its existing network infrastructure resulted to a total of 11,529 site upgrades to 4G/LTE this year, higher than the 10,135 in 2019. Moreover, Globe deployed 5G sites in Metro Manila, as well as certain cities in Visayas and Mindanao making 5G available in 1,045 areas in the country. These network improvements enhanced the customer experience and the Filipino digital lifestyle, and addressed the challenges of the new normal. The new site builds and network upgrades all over the country were validated by an increase in mobile consistency scores across all regions as indicated in the recent report from an independent analytics firm, Ookla®. Its quarterly data shows that Globe's overall Consistency Score in the fourth quarter of 2020 improved to 60.82% from previous quarter’s 56.83%. Globe’s regional mobile Consistency Score™ also improved from the previous quarter in 16 out of 17 regions. In addition, Globe registered increases as high as 10 PPTs (percentage points), with Consistency Scores ranging from 39% and 65% in the last quarter of 2020. Globe financial and operating results for 2020 reported consolidated service revenues of ₱146.4 billion, a moderate decline of 2% from the record level of ₱149.0 billion reported a year ago.

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MisOr joins MinDA cattle program

February 17, 2021

THE province of Misamis Oriental signified willingness to join the Mindanao Development Authority (MinDA) initiated Cattle Breeding and Fattening Program which aims to boost local food production. The project would also aid in avoiding the impending food shortage and establishing an economic enterprise project to earn revenues for the local government units. Secretary Emmanuel Piñol announced on Tuesday (Feb 16) Misamis Oriental Gov. Yevgeney "Bambi" Emano has accepted MinDA's challenge to be one of the five pilot provinces for the implementation of the LGU-funded Cattle Development Program. “Provincial Agriculturist Apollo Pacamalan informed MinDA’s Northern Mindanao Area Management Office head Olie Degala that Gov. Emano eagerly welcomed the project because livestock development is one of his priorities for the province,” he said.  For his part, Emano thanked MinDA for the opportunity to join the program which is being pushed to ensure food self-sufficiency for every province in Mindanao. Under the program, the Development Bank of the Philippines, MinDA's financing partner, will provide low-interest loans to assist the LGUs to establish the facilities under the Mindanao Livestock Industry Development Program. The estimated cost of the project which will fall under the Economic Enterprise Program of each province is P100 million. “With the identification of the 5th participating Pilot Province this week, the Cattle Breeding and Fattening Program is expected to roll out by June this year,” he said.  Also, Piñol explained that the Cattle Breeding and Fattening Program involves the establishment of a facility in each of the provinces where at least 1,000 steers or bullock (neutered young male cows) will be fattened for 100 days under the supervision of MinDA Livestock Consultant Arnel Corpuz and his team.   “The fattened steers are initially acquired from Australia's Northern Territory which had been shipping young cattle to the Philippines for decades now. A Cattle Ship that sails from Australia to Mindanao could load up to 5,000 heads which explains why the program needs five provinces with a 1,000-head allocation to start with, he further explained.  The MinDA chief further added that another 500 local cows (female cattle) to be acquired by the provincial government will be impregnated through artificial insemination using semen from outstanding bulls to upgrade the local cattle population. “The third component of the program is the province-wide AI for farmer-owned cows using semen from outstanding bulls to upgrade the local cattle population and the fourth component is the establishment of an abattoir and processing facility to ensure that the province will enhance value-adding on the fattened steers,” he said.  Every month thereafter, five provinces will be encouraged to participate in the program to ensure that every month starting September 2021, Mindanao will be producing 5,000 heads of fattened steers for its consumers.

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