The ICTSI’s plan is very timely given that Iloilo is poised to become a major exporter of agricultural products once the Jalaur River Multi-purpose Project is completed in 2022. The project will irrigate 31,000 hectares of rice land, doubling the rice production of Iloilo and the region in general. ILOILO City – Amid the expected slowdown of the economy due to the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic, the Western Visayas Regional Development Council has been urged to craft a roadmap aimed at sustaining the region’s growth and development. The ICTSI is still waiting for the green light from the government. He cited as an example the new facility of San Miguel Brewery Inc. (SMB), the country’s leading beer producer, in Iloilo. He called for greater collaboration between the government and private sector to keep up with the challenges. With the development of the Port of Iloilo by the International Container Terminal Services, Inc. (ICTSI), the region’s conectivity would further improve. The private sector should actively get involved with crafting the roadmap and monitoring its compliance, he added. The project will bring the Iloilo Port to world class levels by maximizing big ship capability; installing ship-to-shore gantry cranes; and continuously upgrading yard capacity aligned to traffic studies. These farmers of Barangay Tigum in Pavia, Iloilo are happy to harvest fresh tomatoes. They hope to sell these at a handsome price. Farming has been challenging in recent months due to the coronavirus disease 2019 pandemic, they say. IAN PAUL CORDERO/PN Drilon said Ramon Ang of SMC assured him recently they look forward to completing its new production facility in Iloilo. The ICTSI will push through with its plan to infuse P8.7 billion to expand the Port of Iloilo, according to Drilon. The region registered a gross domestic product of 9.4 percent in 2015, 8.4 percent in 2016, 8.6 percent in 2017, but it slowed down in 2018 at 6.1 percent. The National Economic Development Authority (NEDA) in Region 6 was urged to make consultations with the Regional Development Council, the academe, business community, and various stakeholders. “The formulation and implementation of this roadmap is very timely and critical. This roadmap will provide us a clear direction of where we are today and where we are headed. No province should be left behind. We will move forward as one region,” said Senate Minority Leader Franklin Drilon. Job opportunities await the residents of Region 6 once ongoing investments in the region have been fully materialized, said Drilon. “This project will further enhance regional connectivity and facilitate faster trade between and among provinces. Agricultural products and fisheries production in the region can enter big domestic and foreign markets in refrigerated containers, which will make our products very competitive,” Drilon said. The project also includes the building of a terminal for cruise ship passengers to meet the objectives of the National Tourism Development Plan. “The roadmap will outline the emerging opportunities for the region which boasts accessibility and inter-connectivity as its major assets,” said Drilon. Region 6 is the fifth largest economy in the Philippines outside the National Capital Region (NCR) in 2018. In 2018, Western Visayas recorded the total volume of palay production at 2,232,293 metric tons and fisheries production at 379,471.91 metric tons. “We need to collaborate and harmonize our goals and plans as one region. Now more than ever, we need to work together in order for our economies to grow and preserve the gains that we have achieved in the past,” said Drilon. “Once completed, it will bring more jobs to all provinces in Western Visayas,” he said./PN
New Delhi: Ramkumar Ramanathan notched up a straight set win over Canada’s Vasek Pospisil to reach his first ever ATP semi-finals but veteran Leander Paes bowed out after losing his doubles quarterfinal at the Hall of Fame Open grasscourt tournament in Newport.The 23-year-old from Chennai took one hour and 18 minutes to get across Pospisil 7-5, 6-2 in the quarterfinals on Thursday.The 161-ranked Indian will meet American Tim Smyczek in the last four of the tournament.Ramanathan, who had stunned world No. 8 Dominic Thiem at the Antalya Open last year, sent down five aces and converted the three break points that came his way.Paes, who is playing his first match since creating the Davis Cup world record in February for most number of wins in doubles, and his American partner Jamie Cerretani suffered a 3-6 6-7 (3) loss to giant-killers Jeevan Nedunchezhiyan and Austin Crajicek in the doubles quarterfinals.Jeevan and Austin, who had toppled top seeds Nicholas Monroe and John-Patrick Smith in the first round, will face fourth seeds Spain’s Marcelo Arevalo and Mexico’s Miguel Angel Reyes-Varela in the semifinals.In-form Divij Sharan and his partner Jackson Withrow, seeded second, defeated Australia’s Matthew Ebden and Ukraine’s Sergiy Stakhovsky 7-6 (4) 6-3 to set up a semifinal clash with New Zealand’s Artem Sitak and Israel’s Janathan Erlich.Artem and Janathan saw off third seeds India’s Purav Raja and British Ken Skupski 4-6 6-3 10-8 in a thrilling quarterfinal contest. For all the Latest Sports News News, Tennis News News, Download News Nation Android and iOS Mobile Apps.