Davao City – The National President of the Canadian Chamber of Commerce of the Philippines (CanCham) Julian Payne travelled to Davao on September 9-10 to see the expanded facilities of the Davao International Container Terminal (DICT) that had been opened by Philippine President Rodrigo Roa Duterte on September 2. During his two day visit to Davao, Mr. Payne also made a courtesy visit to the Office of Mayor Sara Duterte and attended the Business and Tourism Industry Townhall Meeting organized by the Davao City Investment Promotion Center (DCIPC) to brief stakeholders about the recent bomb attack in Davao.
Mr. Payne said he welcomed the opportunity to visit Davao as soon as possible after the recent bomb attack. He emphasized that: “CanCham believes it is critically important that the private sector, including foreign chambers of commerce, demonstrate their continued confidence in the potential opportunities and growth of Davao City and more generally in Mindanao. The best way to do this is to visit the city in person, to see the expansion of private sector facilities, and to participate in stakeholder discussions as how to proceed constructively in the aftermath of the recent bomb attack.” He added: “I have been very encouraged in my discussions with private sector representatives and public officials about the immediate and future potential in Davao for growth in business. CanCham, which has an office in Davao and over 40 members in Mindanao, will continue to explore and promote opportunities for Canada-Philippine business interests in area.”
In response to questions about his visit to DICT, Mr. Payne said that “Modern, state-of-the-art transportation facilities, including ports, are critical for long-term and sustained economic growth. The DICT is one of the most modern, if not the most modern container port facility in the Philippines. In the future I am confident that there will be more international shipping routed directly to Davao than via Manila and Cebu with trans-shipments to Mindanao. DICT is now also serving not only imports to and exports from the Philippines but also as a strategic Southeast Pacific trans-shipment point for trade between third countries.”
Mr. Payne praised the role of the Anflocor Management and Investment Corporation (ANFLOCOR), the managing company of DICT, as one of the prime movers for the development of industrial and agricultural sectors in Mindanao. “DICT is a private sector investment built, owned, and operated efficiently by the private sector. It serves not only companies of the Anflocor group, but is also open to other parties for their imports and exports. The investment in DICT is another demonstration of the confidence of the private sector investment community in the economic future of Mindanao including of Davao City.”