Only 3% of development aid goes to Mindanao - Abad
MANILA, Philippines - Budget Secretary Florencio Abad urged multilateral agencies and other donors to extend more loans and grants to Mindanao as only 3% of official development assistance (ODA) received by the Philippines goes to the region.
"I invite our development partners not only to increase the aid offered to the region, but to help us make this region more resilient to erratic weather through proper infrastructure, industry development, and improving the business, investment climate," Abad said in a statement released on Monday, February 4.
Data from the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) showed that Mindanao-specific ODA to date amounts to $280 million, equivalent to a little over 3% of the Philippine total of $8.8 billion.
Even if it has abundant natural and human resources, Abad said Mindanao will not meet its potential without the necessary infrastructure and climate change capacity building mechanisms.
He said Mindanao suffered P17 billion in economic losses due to typhoons Sendong and Pablo. Abad said data showed Pablo cost the region P15.8 billion losses, while Sendong, P1.2 billion.
Abad said Mindanao will also be a good place to focus on in terms of poverty reduction since 40% of families here are living below the poverty line.
"There is great potential for growth in Mindanao due to the large labor force and the abundance of natural resources," Abad said. Mindanao's labor force stood at 9.61 million individuals in 2012, well above the 5.1 million in Metro Manila. - Rappler.com