April 6, 2021
Written by John Carlo Tria
A major tax reform long awaited by many business groups in the country is the CREATE law, which seeks to lower taxes to the level of our ASEAN neighbors and strengthens incentives.
For many enterprises, especially our rural MSMEs, the lower corporate taxes for a wider range of businesses and the possibility of new incentives for our local industries will be a big help for businesses recover and build resilience as they continue to recover in the new normal. More business can now invest in tools to make themselves more resilient.
CREATE is a significant milestone in our economic history, and will set the stage for the future, its beneficial effects to help local enterprises apparent long after 2021. May it and other important reforms meant to strengthen our economy proceed at an even faster pace.
Davao’s chocolate producers soar
Over the last year we have noticed a rise in the prominence of brands of chocolate products. The Department of Agriculture’s declaration of Davao as the cacao capital may have shed light on this important industry and its cacao entrepreneurs.
Davao’s chocolate producers, both growers and processors, are innovative entreprenurs which have enabled them to evolve into new products far beyond tablea. They now make truffles, candies, champorado mix, and blocks and powder for bakers.
The benefits of this growing industry go far beyond those cooking and making the truffles and the candies.
It goes to the farmers, who cultivate cacao alongside other crops, allowing better diversity as promoted by thr governent, which is a must in this age of climate change, when we should no longer depend on single crops, as changing climate patters can hurt harvest schedules. Having varied crops in the farm makes us resilient.
Moreover, getting more producers and their products to supply the large local and forrign demand will mean livelihoods for thousands of small upland growers of this perennial crop (a tree basically) which also has the benefit of keeping our soils and slopes more stable, since like coffee and other fruit trees, farm income comes from harvesting the fruit directly without cutting down the tree.
This means, that unlike other crops, you don’t need to uproot, retill, refertilize and replant, which takes away a portion of the soil every time it rains. Likewise, it is suitable in areas where other cash crops are difficult to grow, and is good for intercropping among coconuts, boosting the income of coconut farmers.
Visit the cacao city cooperative store at https://cacaocity.com/
Panguil Bay Bridge is a go
DPWH Secretary Mark Villar recently announced that the construction of the much awaited Panguil Bay Bridge linking Lanao del Norte to Misamis Occidental is to begin.
What it means for frequent road travelers like me is that cut the travel time of many going from Cagayan de Oro and Iligan to the cities of Ozamis, Oroquieta, Tangub, boosting the economic prospects of these important economic hubs through faster connectivity. The bridge will strengthen this economic corridor and attract investments.
Article first appeared in the Manila Bulletin website last April 6, 2021.