Strong partnerships among government, business sector, academe, youth, interfaith, civil society, and project partnerships with international community are expected in Metro Cagayan de Oro with the successful hosting of the first Northern Mindanao Business Conference.

The virtual conference featured insights from guest speakers on the state of businesses in Metro Cagayan de Oro by local and foreign stakeholders, analysis on trends and business opportunities, and a discussion on potential investments and doing business in Northern Mindanao.

It highlighted the Metro Economic Masterplan and emphasized the city’s many recognitions such as being awarded as 7th Most Competitive Highly Urbanized City in 2020 and the Most Resilient City in the Philippines in 2018, among others.

Being a strategic regional center, Metro Cagayan de Oro serves as the major gateway and transshipment hub in Mindanao. Northern Mindanao is among the fastest growing regions in the country, with the service sector leading the regional economy.

The city has a strong and well-functioning financial sector, hosting 80% of the banks in the region with 20% annual rate of increase in bank deposits.

Meanwhile, infrastructure is booming with the presence of Philippine Veterans Investment Development Corporation (PHIVIDEC), the largest industrial estate in the country; Mindanao Container Terminal (MCT); and STEAG State Power, the first coal thermal power plant in Mindanao which operates a net of 210 megawatts.

With the Panguil Bay Bridge and Bukidnon Airport nearing it completions, more infrastructure developments are being anticipated including a railway project, transit oriented housing project, waste to energy project, cable car project, innovation hubs, and integrated steel mill.

Collaborative developments  are also in the works by Cagayan de Oro Chamber of Commerce and Industry Foundation, Inc. (Oro Chamber) and Internal Chambers of Commerce-European Union in Mindanao. Additionally, Italian investments intended to transform Northern Mindanao are made possible through Italpinas Development Corporation (IDC).

The virtual conference was graced by prominent speakers in the region including Senator Miguel “Migz” Zubiri, Cagayan de Oro City Mayor Oscar “Oca” Moreno, European Union Head for Commerce and Trade Maurizio Cellini, Oro Chamber President Ruben Vegafria, Italian Chamber of Commerce Vice President Lorens Ziller, German Chamber of Commerce and Industry Senior Vice President Marie Mariano, Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) Regional Director Ermedio Abang , National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) Regional Director Mylah Cariño, STEAG State Power Inc. Plant Manager Carsten Evers, and IDC Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Romolo Nati.

The 2021 Northern Mindanao Business Conference was presented by Olacon Online Academy Conferences and Global Link MP Events International Inc. in partnership with the Oro Chamber, the Italian Chamber of Commerce in the Philippines, and the German-Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry.

It was one of the activities conducted in celebration of the National MSME Month 2021. ♦

Date of Release: 30 July 2021