(Script for an audio-video project that promotes CAR as an investment
In the islands of the Philippines, there exist a different
kind of destination, one that boasts of cool crisp weather, mist shrouded peaks and verdant valleys.
This is the Cordillera Administrative Region, named after the majestic
Cordillera Mountain Range that rings its
provinces and is located in the Country’s Northern Island of Luzon.
..its rugged terrain and breath-taking topography have been home to the
sturdy and industrious mountain people for thousands of years, while its climate has bred an equally unique culture distinct
from that of the country’s lowland colonized regions.
The six provinces that make up the region are Abra, Benguet, Ifugao,
the Mountain Province,
Kalinga and Apayao.
The region’s center is the vibrant mountain city of Baguio,
officially known as the Summer Capital of the Philippines.
CAR’s vision for a sustainable future is anchored on the continuing
development of key focus areas providing vast investment opportunities.
(I. Greens and Ornamental Grocers)
Known as the salad bowl of the Philippines, the Cordillera is a rich source of fresh fruits and vegetables.
Strawberries from Benguet, mangoes from Abra, coffee and citrus fruits
from Kalinga, cassava from Apayao, highland vegetables from Ifugao and Mt. Province and other crops rarely found anywhere
else in the country are easily grown in this region, thanks to its temperate climate and fertile soil.
When fully cultivated, the vast agricultural lands of Kalinga and Apayao
can substantially contribute to the rice supply of the entire country.
Fresh produce grown in the region are available at the vegetable trading
post of La Trinidad in Benguet….a vital transshipment point where goods are sold, transported and distributed to markets
Opportunities in agriculture and agribusiness abound and investments
are welcome in food processing, packaging and other post harvest services and facilities.
Other industries with enticing prospects are cut-flower, organically
grown rice and processed fruits.
(II. Physical Integration)
Two main thoroughfares spanning its circumference service the Cordillera
from Manila. The
Maharlika highway is situated along the region’s eastern portion, while the Manila
North road is at its western side.
A network of roads and bridges spans mountains and rivers to interconnect
Air transportation facilities within and nearby the Cordillera region
have world-class potential. The Loakan
Airport in Baguio City receives a number of tourists and businessmen.
Several tourism related airports also service the region; namely: The
Laoag International Airport in Ilocos Norte, San Fernando Airport in La Union, Bagabag Airport in Nueva Vizcaya, Cauayan Airport
in Isabela, and Cagayan’s Tuguegarao Airport.
Flying time to nearby Asian countries such as China,
Japan, Korea and Singapore are less than three and a half hours.
International sealanes have access to North Luzon through the base port
in Poro Point in San Fernando City, La Union, the Salomague Port in Ilocos Sur, and the Currimao sea port in Ilocos Norte.
Three other sea ports complement
these to further enhance trade. These are the Sual sea port in Pangasinan,
the Palanan port in Isabela, and Port Irene in Sta. Ana, Cagayan.
The Cordillera Roads Improvement Project (CRIP) is designed to connect
Metro Baguio with the region’s provincial capitals and
other key growth areas via an efficient and year-round transportation network. Modern
telecommunication and information technology services are widely available in urban and rural areas.
Mobile phones are the most applicable communications facility in this
mountainous region. Investments in the modernization of transportation, information
technology and communication services are equally attractive, due to increasing demand.
(III. Energy Producer)
of Benguet is home to two major hydroelectric facilities, the Ambuklao
and Binga Dams. In addition, the Cordillera watershed is a significant water
source to the San Roque, Magat, and Chico River
Dams. Also, site-specific
mini-hydro projects provide clean power to remote areas.
Thanks to the Build-Operate-Transfer Law, the doors have been opened
for private sector participation in small-scale hydro-power projects as well as other alternative energy sources which have
been earmarked for development.
(IV. Knowledge-based Industries and Agri-Industrial
The region has focused on light to medium manufacturing industries which
are environment-friendly and preserve age-old practices and traditional means of livelihood. Textile weaving is common throughout
the region. Each province has specialized industry focus such as bamboo-based
industries in Abra, winemaking in Mountain Province,
silver jewelry in Baguio, fruits and vegetables in Benguet,
Ifugao’s gifts, toys and housewares, coffee in Kalinga and wood furnishings in Apayao.
The Philippine Economic Zone Authority or PEZA in Baguio City is an ideal location for modern
light-to-medium industries. It is host to international companies such as Texas Instruments,
Moog Controls, and Clientlogic. The site boasts of excellent services and comfortable
working environment for business operations.
In addition to the PEZA, CAR makes available to locators the 34-hectare
former CRC, or Cellophil Resources Corporation site in Barangay Gaddani, Tayum, Abra, which was converted as the region’s
second economic zone. The CRC is a mere 8 kilometers from Bangued, Abra’s capital town.
These two economic zones offer tax exemptions, training cost deductions
and other attractive incentives to interested locators comparable with those of neighboring South East Asian Countries.
(V. Prime Educational Center)
A highly trainable English speaking and educated work force is easily
available in the region. Baguio City is known as the Educational Center North of Manila, hosting world-class learning institutions
like the Philippine Military Academy and
Various colleges and universities
offer different fields catering to the needs of industries. Likewise,
technical and vocational schools abound as a rich source of skilled manpower.
(VI. Watershed Cradle and Balanced Ecosystem
As a vital watershed in Northern Philippines,
the Cordillera strives to become a model of development that does not compromise the health of the ecosystem. As it develops,
the region relies on its rich indigenous practices to promote sustainable development.
Two major mining companies have pioneered and continue to operate in
the area producing gold, silver and copper, proof that the mountainous topography
is rich in mineral resources.
Other areas remain untapped, waiting for prospective investors to explore
vast opportunities in this sector.
(VII. Ecotourism Destination)
The thrust of the tourism sector is to preserve, conserve and enhance
the Cordillera’s natural environment and rich cultural heritage.
The Cordillera Region is home to the world famous Ifugao rice terraces,
honored by UNESCO as a world heritage site and which stands today as a monument of the people’s will and ingenuity.
Popular tourism spots such as Baguio and
Banaue are supplemented by other destinations such as the lush vegetation of Mt.
Data, mystical Mt. Pulag,
and the picturesque town of Sagada, with its awesome caves
and quaint hanging coffins.
Interesting tourism activities include: playing golf; spelunking; mountain
and rock climbing, mountain biking and white water rafting.
Annual indigenous festivals open to both local and foreign tourists are:
Panagbenga of Baguio, Adivay of Benguet, Lang-ay of Mt.
Province, Imbayah of Ifugao, Kalinga’s Ullalim; Padaya ti Apayao
and Arya Abra.
Hotels, restaurants and other facilities are available providing ideal
locations for local and international conferences and conventions.
(VIII. Social Development)
The region has developed competencies and specialization in the area
of health services, comparable with those of highly-urbanized areas.
Other hospitals, diagnostic centers and laboratories are sprouting in
the city providing modern and traditional health services and facilities catering to the demand for medical tourism.
These competitive advantages have established the region as a major investment
hub in Northern Philippines.
With its strategic location and close proximity to vast East Asian markets
like Japan, South Korea, Taiwan, Hongkong, China and other Southeast Asian neighbors, the Cordillera offers local and foreign
investors as well as every visitor endless opportunities, unique discoveries and an unforgettable lifetime experience.
The Cordillera Administrative Region….,…unique and unbeatable
combination of magnificent beauty and opportunities…………welcome to this extraordinary destination.
(lifted from the RDC-CAR AVP files)