BARMM, Davao execs bullish about economy
DAVAO CITY, Davao del Sur, Philippines — Still emerging from the COVID-19 pandemic, the economies of both the Davao region and the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM) appear to be on the upbeat, as new investments start to come in and renewed business confidence are buoying spending.
Maria Lourdes Lim, the Davao regional director of the National Economic Development Authority, said the region’s economy contracted by as much as 7.9 percent at the start of the pandemic but bounced back last year by posting a growth of 8.2 percent.
Davao region’s economy generated P954.1 billion last year, surpassing the P900.9 billion posted in 2019 or the prepandemic level, according to the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA). The economy hit a low of P833.2 billion during the pandemic year of 2020 and started to slowly recover to P882.2 billion in 2021.
This was a “remarkable rebound” given the setback caused by the pandemic, noted Lim during the launching of the Davao Regional Development Plan (DRDP) on May 23.
Investors are back
The fastest growth was noted in the accommodation and food sector (35.6-percent growth), the transportation and storage sector (28.7 percent), and mining and quarrying (27.6 percent), the PSA report showed.
Under the DRDP (covering the years 2023 to 2028), Davao region seeks to position itself as an international logistics hub in southern Philippines by increasing the efficiency of its intermodal and integrated transport system connecting different parts of Mindanao, Lim said.
BARMM, on the other hand, posted a 6.61-percent growth in its regional economy in 2022, which amounted to approximately P280.3 billion, according to the PSA data.
In the first five months of this year, the Board of Investments (BOI) in the BARMM already posted P2.7 billion in investments, exceeding its P2.5-billion target for this year, said Bangsamoro BOI chair Mohammad Pasigan.