The Western Visayas Regional Development Plan (RDP) 2023-2028, which will serve as the region’s blueprint in pursuit of its socio-economic development, was officially unveiled on July 14.
The plan, which was turned over to the planning committees of the Regional Development Council (RDC), comprises three parts.
Part 1 gives an overview of the regional economy, development contexts and trends, regional spatial framework, strategy framework, and assessment of selected headline indicators.
Part 2 focuses on promoting human and social development, reducing vulnerabilities, and protecting purchasing power, while the last part discusses the transformation of the production sectors to generate more quality jobs and competitive products.
The plan has a special chapter on championing energy transition to promote renewable energy in the region.
NEDA Regional Director Arecio Casing Jr. said the plan “ushers the promise (of) economic and social transformation by creating jobs, providing more income, earning opportunities, and accelerating poverty reduction.”
NEDA Undersecretary Carlos Bernardo Abad Santos, in his keynote message, said it is already a collective responsibility to “transform the strategies into tangible action, and continually evaluate their effectiveness.”
“Regional development is the cornerstone of our region’s progress, enabling us to effectively address poverty, inequality, and foster inclusive growth across all regions,” he said.
Iloilo Governor Arthur Defensor Jr. also shared his “Bulig Eskwela sang Probinsya” (Bes Probins), a program for an effective and relevant transformational education system in Iloilo as a vehicle to help public awareness of the plan.
The program has three components, one of which is the guidance and counseling program which he envisioned as a platform to teach the national development plan to secondary students.
“We want them to know the direction of the country during the time when they are deciding what career to pursue because we want to address the disconnect or a gap, because we want to produce an educational system that caters to the needs of the government and the economy,” he said in his address.
Bes Probins is a local implementation of Republic Act No. 11206, or the Career Guidance and Counseling Act which Defensor authored when he was congressman of the Third District. (with reports from PNA)