COTABATO’s local government is accelerating the expansion of the Central Mindanao Airport, which is currently in the land acquisition phase, along with the development of an agro-industrial park, the province’s governor said.
In her State of the Province Address on Tuesday, Gov. Emmylou “Lala” Taliño-Mendoza reported that the Provincial Legal Office has been able to notarize 41 of the 48 deeds of sale needed to facilitate the transfer of ownership of land for the airport.
“The seven remaining others are still under the process of complying with documentary requirements for the eventual execution of the Deed of Absolute Sale,” she said.
She said the expansion of the airport’s perimeter fence, with a project cost of P32 million, was 85% done as of end-February.
“The operationalization of the Central Mindanao Airport (CMA) is one of our administration’s priorities to spur the growth of commerce and agriculture and even tourism activities in the province of Cotabato and even in our neighboring provinces,” Ms. Mendoza said.
The airport, located in the town of M’lang, was completed in 2009 but has never been used commercially due to documentary issues.
The facility is included in the Mindanao Development Authority’s (MinDA) priority infrastructure projects portfolio and is seen to “catalyze inclusive and balanced rural development in Mindanao.”
It is seen to “compliment General Santos and Awang Airports and will boost the economic activities of the area where many agricultural products, including highly-perishable fruits, come from,” according to MinDa.
Meanwhile, the 27-hectare Cotabato Provincial Agro-Industrial Park (PAIP), also located in M’lang, is also underway, the governor said.
“This agro-industrial marketing integration hub will cater to the processing of high-value crops and provides services and facilities that will generate added value to other commodities produced locally,” she said.
“Having a two-kilometer access road to CMA as an easy gateway for cargos, PAIP is also envisioned to create employment for Cotabateños. — Maya M. Padillo