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Batangas leverages competitive advantage to spur growth

BATANGAS CITY: The provincial leadership vowed to capitalize on Batangas’ strategic coastal location and its skilled workforce to surpass earlier economic performances.

In an interview on Saturday, Batangas governor Hermilando Mandanas said the inauguration last month of the PHP1.3-billion Batangas Port Passenger Terminal Building signals an intensified effort to drive the provincial economy forward, leveraging in its competitive advantages.

‘We see a bright future [here] because of our strategic location. We have the basic materials available here… everybody wants to land in Batangas,’ he told the Philippine News Agency.

Earlier, President Ferdinand R. Marcos, Jr. personally led the inauguration of the expanded terminal, saying that this would bring annual passenger capacity from 4 million to 12.8 million.

Mandanas said the new terminal will emerge as the ‘biggest, busiest and most modern in the country,’ and will serve as ‘a bridge to the entry of more foreign investors.’

He earlier announced that his
administration is poised to build a logistics and food transport hub on a sprawling coastal property in the province.

The new food terminal is envisioned to expedite the transport of food throughout Southern Luzon while creating thousands of jobs for Batangueños.

Mandanas also underscored that the scenic views, pristine beaches, and vast natural resources of the province could be cultivated to further help propel the province’s tourism and hospitality sector, making them bigger contributors to the local economy.

‘It is also our priority to protect, preserve, and enrich the God-given natural resources of the province, especially this is where the Verde Island Passage is located, which is recognized around the world as the ‘center of the center of marine shore fish biodiversity,’ he added.

Meanwhile, Mandanas, who is also the chair of the Calabarzon Regional Development Council, is expecting a continuous growth of the regional economy this year.

The National Economic and Development Authority here (NEDA-Ca
labarzon) recorded a 5.2 percent growth in the Calabarzon economy with PHP3.10 trillion last year from PHP2.94 trillion in 2022.

‘Considering that Calabarzon is the biggest generator of products and services… we have more workers here than Metro Manila, but because the offices are [there], the reports are [also there], that is why we are trying to correct the presentation of statistics,’ the governor said.

However, he has yet to specify the council’s targets for the five-province region.

Source: Philippines News Agency