EO creating coco coir industry dev’t council awaits palace nod

28 March 2013

An Executive Order creating the Philippine Coco Coir Industry Development Council (PCCIDC) has been finalized by the technical working group for approval by Malacañang.

PHILCOIR, Inc. President Ariel F. Aguirre revealed this at the recently-concluded 2nd National Coco Coir Summit in Lucena City where about 1,000 participants from the national and local government agencies and units, relevant agencies, institutions, and industry stakeholders gathered to look at strategic areas of intervention.

"To carry out this joint statement of commitment, the interagency coco coir and peat task force was created to ensure the implementation of the programs and projects of the coco coir development plan," Aguirre said.

The PCCIDC has already been finalized by the TWG for approval of the Office of the President, Aguirre said.

The EO intends to promote and foster the development of the coco coir industry and directing domestic utilization in organic agriculture, horticulture and soil erosion control projects of government, expanding value-adding, and export promotion.

"We expect that this historic and important EO will be signed by the President soon and consequently prioritize attention and ensure consolidated and sustained effort for the coco coir industry," Aguirre said.

"With this awaited EO, the industry can look forward to the creation of a big domestic market for coco coir products, specially, coco nets to be used by the DPWH for slope protection and erosion control for its road construction projects as well as DENR for rehabilitation mining sites; and coco peat to be used by the DA and the PCA for the fertilization of coconuts and other agricultural crops."

"We are hopeful that this EO will finally unlock the huge economic potential of the coco fiber and coco peat subsectors bringing about the unprecedented growth and helping alleviate poverty in the countryside," Aguirre added.

The summit, led by Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) and the Philippine Coconut Authority (PCA), aimed to gather the industry's stakeholders and key players nationwide to assess their performance status, update on the results of government interventions, share best practices for replication, and resolve their concerns.

The 2nd national coco coir summit and its activities were cited as a testament of the dedication and hard work of the TWG (or the national technical working group on coco coir) not only to sustain interest and attract attention to the coco coir industry but more importantly to ensure its further development and growth, Aguirre said.

This TWG on coco coir is composed of the representatives of the agency task force, including the Development Bank of the Philippines (DBP) and Land Bank (LB), and led by DTI Undersecretary Merly M. Cruz. For almost two years, the group has been meeting monthly to formulate and drafting a comprehensive and thorough development plan for the coco coir industry.

Aguirre noted that the 1st Coco Coir summit, wherein a joint statement of commitment was signed by government agencies and industry stakeholders, has shown the firm results to support and develop the coco coir industry. This joint statement of commitment was signed by the secretaries of the DTI, Department of Agriculture (DA), Department of Science and Technology (DOST), Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH); administrators of the Philippine Coconut Authority (PCA), and Fiber Industry Development Authority (FIDA); and chairman of the coconut industry investment fund and president of the PHILCOIR.