Agro-food Park to Rise in Cagayan Town

By: Leander C. Domingo (The Manila Times) – October 13, 2017

A MULTI-MILLION peso Integrated Agro-Food Park (IAFP) to be implemented under public-private partnership (PPP) scheme is set to rise at the Cagayan State University (CSU) in Sanchez Mira town, Cagayan province.

The IAFP will be established in a 50-hectare area that will become the first commercial-scale one-stop-site for agricultural production and processing of food products in Cagayan Valley or Region 2.

To be put up in Sitio (sub-village) Nagbaranganan in Barangay (village) Centro 2, Sanchez Mira town, the IAFP is also a state-of-the-art agricultural production and processing site that is composed of provisions such as agro-industrial economic zone (AIEZ); support infrastructures/industries/communities; leased sites for warehousing of agricultural products and other raw materials, among others; leased sites for industrial farms; business, commercial and entertainment centers; public transport system and terminals/stations; and road networks and utilities.

The establishment and management of the IAFP is the main feature of the Regional Convergence Initiative for Sustainable Rural Development II (RCI-SRD II) under Agro-Forestry Abundance and Productivity using Integrated Technologies through Barangay-based Agricultural Ventures and Advancement (AgAPIT-BAVA)-Convergence Area Development Plan (CADP)

The AgAPIT-BAVA was launched on today.

An initiative and brainchild of Rep. Baby Aline Vargas-Alfonso of the 2nd Congressional District of Cagayan province, the convergence area includes the towns of Santa Praxedes, Claveria, Pamplona and Abulug with CSU-Sanchez Mira Campus as a partner.

Eco-Tourism Destination by 2025

According to Alfonso, the CADP envisions a sustainable agro-industrial location and eco-tourism destination by 2025 with a mission to empower the people in the protection and conservation of resources of the said Cagayan district.

CADP’s objectives are to generate and package technologies that will increase agricultural, tourism and other revenues, among others, that could uplift the said district’s socio-economic condition.

Meanwhile, the Rural Transformation Centers (RTCs) that will be located in the said district’s municipalities will serve as the spokes to the IAFP. The RTCs will be composed of agricultural production areas, its corresponding agricultural, social and commercial infrastructures.

The private sector will provide the funding for necessary equipment and facilities of the project, while the national government through the National Convergence Initiative (NCI)-SRD, CSU and partner agencies will provide legal and technical assistance. A joint venture company may be formed to oversee the project development and management.

The NCI-SRD is a strategy to enhance rural development initiatives through the complementation of resources of government agencies. It also addresses and resolves policy and jurisdictional gap that slows down the effective and efficient implementation of the programs and projects of different agencies.

The convergence was formally institutionalized through the departments of Agriculture, Agrarian Reform and Environment in joint memorandum circular number issued in 2010, which embraced the management approach for watershed ecosystem espousing the holistic perspective of the ecosystem for improved governance and maximized use of resources.

Recently, the RCI-SRD II were joined by the region’s Department of Tourism, Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources, Department of Science and Technology, Department of Trade and Industry, National Economic Development Authority, Cagayan Economic Zone Authority and other agencies to have a more comprehensive delivery of services that will benefit the people in the rural areas.