During the recently held Cities and Municipalities Competitiveness Research – Survey Forum conducted by the Department of Trade and Industry in partnership with the Bohol Investment Promotion Center- Office of the Governor, it was recognized that Bohol ranked 54th in the National Competitiveness Index among all other provinces in the country. Gov. Edgar M. Chatto expressed his desire for Bohol Province to greatly improve its national ranking and be recognized as one of the more competitive provinces in the country.
He enjoined all the municipalities to cooperate in the survey and data collection, at the same time, consider those areas of governance where they are weak at in their next planning and prioritization of budget allocation for consequent implementation.
He further stressed that increase in competitiveness translates to more investments, job availability, wealth creation, and consequently poverty reduction.
The rankings are based on competitiveness scores determined by the values of the actual data, as well as completeness of the submitted data. It can’t be discounted that there is still a big room of opportunity when it comes to the completeness of data submitted by the respective municipalities in the province.
This gave rise to the plan supported by Gov. Edgar M. Chatto to create and convene a warm body to be called, Bohol Competitiveness Technical Working Group, to ensure coordination among the various municipalities and with a commitment to clarify issues, formulate strategies and develop action plans towards greater competitiveness of our municipalities and Tagbilaran City in the next Cities and Municipalities Competitiveness Index.
An initial meeting was held on April 06, 2016 to brainstorm on the identification of members and formulation of related policy and action plans. Among the attendees were: Ms. Madeleine Mary B. Sinon of USAID/SURGE Project, Ms. Marietta Gasatan of the Bohol Chamber of Commerce and Industry (BCCI), Mr. Jude Guieb with Mr. Blair Panong of the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), and Ms. Maria Fe Dominise of the Bohol Investment Promotion Center (BIPC), who was tasked by Gov. Chatto to initiate the discussion process.
Gov. Chatto has high hopes that with the establishment of the Bohol Competitiveness TWG and with regular monitoring and handholding of the municipalities, LGU compliance and improvement in data gathering and submission will be apparent and more responsive programs and projects will be implemented, that will catapult Bohol to a spot if not in the top 40, at least 12 notches higher from the current rank in the next year or so. (Stephanie Salaysay)