A situationer on the Western Visayas economy and the development directions enshrined in the Regional Development Plan, 2023-2028 was presented by NEDA-VI during the Multi-Sectoral Consultation on the formulation of N3A in Cebu City on May 3-4, 2023.
EnP Juvelyn-Boniba Pamonag presented the region’s macroeconomic condition highlighting the impact of the pandemic to the socioeconomic situation in the last three years. She shared that Western Visayas experienced a slump when the region’s growth declined to negative 9.7 percent in 2020. The local economy began to recover in 2021 with the relaxation of pandemic restrictions, gradual and safe reopening of businesses and nationwide vaccination activities. The 2021 GRDP improved and posted a 5.9 percent growth. In 2022, Western Visayas continued to recover and recorded the highest growth among all regions at 9.3 GRDP growth rate valued at PHP955 billion pesos.
To give an overview and guide the vertical and horizontal alignment of sector plans with the regional and national objectives, EnP Pamonag presented the Western Visayas development framework and headline targets under the current administration. Primarily, Western Visayas will sustain growth until the end-of-plan period in 2028 with a target GRDP valued at 1.299PHP trillion. To achieve that, the GRDP is expected to grow from its base in 2021 to a range of seven to eight percent by 2028. The sustained economic growth is expected to facilitate socioeconomic transformation and will redound in poverty reduction from 19 percent in 2021 to a range of 6.7 to 8.4 percent by end of 2028.
Also presented were the major infrastructure flagship projects in the region including the completion of the Jalaur River Multipurpose Project and the Bacolod-Negros Occidental Economic Highway, and the realization of the proposed Iloilo-Capiz-Aklan Expressway and Panay-Guimaras-Negros Island Bridge, among others. These projects will facilitate connectivity and are expected to propel growth by creating more jobs and economic opportunities in the next six years.
The two-day activity was participated in by 169 participants of the National Anti-Poverty Commission’s (NAPC) 14 basic sectoral councils from Eastern, Central and Western Visayas. (JBPamonag/NEDA 6)