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Agri-based products pushed in Western Visayas

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By Tara Yap

Iloilo City – By-products from the agriculture and fishery sectors in Western Visayas are seen as a key component in the region’s 2017 Investment Priorities Plan (IPP).

Angelica Cayas, international promotions director of Board of Investments (BOI), an attached agency of Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), said the by-products can be integral part of the revival of the manufacturing industry.

“We are trying to bring back manufacturing. We lost out to China many, many years ago,” Cayas told Manila Bulletin during a September 8 workshop in Iloilo City.

The Regional Development Council (RDC) identified key raw materials from Aklan, Antique, Capiz, Guimaras, Iloilo, and Negros Occidental provinces that can be processed or part of the supply chain.

DTI Regional Director Rebecca Rascon said these are coffee, cacao, upland vegetables, herbs, spices, native chicken, coconut, mango, oyster, abaca, swine, seaweeds, and muscovado sugar.

Rascon noted these raw materials can be utilized by Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) for its value-added purposes.

Cayas added that the participation of MSMEs means inclusive growth, especially for farmers and fishermen in the rural areas.

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