BACOLOD CITY – Top local chief executives in the Visayas are pushing for efforts to jointly promote the region in the areas of trade, tourism and infrastructure, Mayor Alfredo Abelardo Benitez here said on Monday.
Benitez, who chairs the Regional Development Council-Western Visayas (RDC-6), was elected chairman of the National Economic Development Authority Board-Regional Development Committee, Visayas Area Committee (NB-RDCom VAC) during the reorganizational meeting held at Seda Vertis North in Quezon City on June 7.
“We are discussing what we can bring to the Visayas. One of the things we talked about is to share resources and activities to promote Visayas, particularly in trade, tourism and infrastructure,” he said in an interview.
The Visayas is comprised of Western Visayas (Region 6), Central Visayas (Region 7), and Eastern Visayas (Region 8).
Benitez said being considered is the holding of a festival that will be staged around the Visayas region as well as a grand trade convention to feature products from the three regions.
“The third one being discussed is a Visayan tourism highway, crossing from east to west. We want people from Bacolod to visit Samar, Leyte and also those from Samar and Leyte to come here. How to interconnect the fragmented geographical feature of the Visayas so we can share economic development,” he added.
Joining Benitez in the NB-RDCom VAC as co-chairpersons are Bohol Governor Erico Aristotle Aumentado, RDC-7 chairperson, and Ormoc City Mayor Lucy Marie Torres-Gomez, RDC-8 chairperson.
In an earlier statement, Benitez said he is honored by the vote of confidence of his fellow committee members to lead the NB-RDCom as he underscored the importance of collaboration and partnership in achieving sustainable and inclusive development for the Visayas.
The NB-RDCom is mainly tasked to formulate and monitor the implementation of policies that reduce regional growth disparities, and promote equitable allocation of resources among regions and serve as a clearinghouse for key regional development policy proposals which impact two or more regions. (PNA)