Cotabato City (August 6, 2015) – The Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao’s (ARMM) investment board will receive an award from the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) in recognition of the important role of business investment in the Mindanao peace process.
The ARMM’s Regional Board of Investments (RBOI) will receive the BSP’s Award for Outstanding Partner for Regional Economic Development on August 11 for its contribution to the success of the peace process by actively promoting and facilitating private sector investments in the region.
RBOI is the first agency from ARMM to receive such award. BSP has been giving recognition to its outstanding partners these past 12 years. The award is given annually as BSP’s way of expressing gratitude for the strong support it receives from its partner institutions.
Business investments in the ARMM have been growing tremendously since 2013 as a result of the stability, especially peace and order, engendered by the peace process in Mindanao with the signing of the Comprehensive Agreement on the Bangsamoro in 2013 between the Philippine government and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front.
Private investors were also lured by the reforms on good governance introduced by the administration of ARMM Governor Mujiv S. Hataman.
RBOI, along with other institutions that have continuously supported the BSP’s statistical initiatives, information requirements, and advocacy programs, will be recognized during the 2015 Awards Ceremony and Appreciation Lunch for Stakeholders at the Greenleaf Hotel in General Santos City.
Lawyer Ishak V. Mastura, chairman and managing head of RBOI, will be receiving the award on behalf of the agency. RBOI was nominated by BSP-Cotabato Branch and won over other nominees due to the value, comprehensiveness and timeliness of the information and reports that the agency has provided to BSP.
Such data are necessary for the BSP’s Report on Regional Economic Development in the Philippines. The agency also has a good track record of cooperation with BSP and economic data gathering, which is another criterion for the said award category.
Mastura said that the agency has been open to the public in highlighting its accomplishments through its official website while intensifying its information dissemination through the help of its media networks.
“This is part of our active participation to the open governance of the Hataman administration. We make sure that relevant information is being shared to stakeholders and partners that need ARMM investment-related data like the BSP.” “This is also our way of providing useful knowledge that will further contribute to the advancement of an informed government and society as a whole,” Mastura added.
As of July 2015, RBOI has recorded P1.8 billion worth of investments in ARMM. This is expected to increase to at least P5 billion before the year ends since major investments are in the pipeline.
One of these is a P3.7-billion plantation of Cavendish bananas intended for the export market. Other projects are an oil palm plantation costing P1.3 billion; a napier grass biomass fuel production project, which is estimated to cost P400 million; and the modernization and expansion of a cassava starch factory that needs P200 million.
The Outstanding Partner Award for Regional Economic Development from the BSP is seen as an acknowledgment of the Hataman administration’s accomplishments in sustaining private sector investments in ARMM. The region posted investments of P1.4 billion in 2013 and P3.8 billion in 2014. This year’s figure is expected to exceed that of last year. (Bureau of Public Information)