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PIA Press Release

Davao region's agri industry still shielded from crisis

By Mai Gevera

Davao City (10 February) -- Unlike other regions which cater more on the manufacturing sector, Region XI is slightly affected by the global financial crisis.

This is brought by the agriculture industry which the region has championed on.

Labor regional director Jalilo de la Torre announced in a press conference the slight effect of the crisis on the businesses in the region.

"We will experience a downturn but not of the same scale in other regions," he said.

De la Torre observed less reports of companies displacing and retrenching their workers related to the financial crunch which all started in the United States.

This was attributed to the agriculture sector which is believed to remain a priority in man's hierarchy of needs.

Mindanao, specifically Region XI doesn't have large electronics and garments sector but it rather offers services or food supply.

The region particularly leads in the export of Cavendish banana. As per monitoring of the DOLE XI in most banana companies within the area, these companies have not yet made any significant move in their labor department.

"The reason why they are not yet feeling the effects of the crisis is because they have supply arrangements which are covered by long contracts," de la Torre said.

This early, the banana export industry is still retaining their workers. However, DOLE stressed that the crisis may not spare any industry as this would cause a domino effect to all the sectors.

This has pushed the department to implement early interventions to prevent future difficulties brought about by the crisis.

DOLE XI conducted a business counseling seminar for all its personnel as well as PESO managers. This enabled the personnel the knowledge on what assistance to provide the displaced workers.

A psychosocial counseling is also set for the DOLE personnel to equip them the right skills in handling cases of displaced workers. The module includes spirituality and value of savings.

The department has also tapped the Davao Association of Guidance counselors for the conduct of psycho-social trainors training and referral system and arrangement of difficult cases. (PIA XI) [top]

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