(Davao City, 17-18 August 2023). The Regional Development Council (RDC) XI participated in the first-ever Regional-National Investment Programming (RNIP) Dialogue at Seda Manila Bay, Parañaque City on August 17-18, 2023. Led by the RDC XI Acting Chairperson Arturo M. Milan, alongside RDC XI Vice Chairperson and NEDA XI Regional Director Maria Lourdes D. Lim, and RDC XI Secretary and NEDA XI Assistant Director Gilberto A. Altura, the RDC XI played a pivotal role in ensuring that the 12 pilot national government agencies (NGAs) considered the Davao Region priority projects and programs (PAPs) for inclusion in the updating of their Public Investment Program (PIP) 2023-2028.

In the opening statement of NEDA Secretary Arsenio M. Balisacan, conveyed by Undersecretary Carlos Bernardo O. Abad Santos, the Secretary underscored the Dialogue’s importance in bridging the seeming disconnect between the priority PAPs outlined in the PIP of the national government and the Regional Development Investment Program (RDIP) which captures the priority PAPs of the regions. With this, the Dialogue aims to strengthen the linkage between the PIP and the RDIP through the ACOs and RDCs by harmonizing sectoral priorities with regional priorities, as well as, synchronizing the regional and national investment programming timelines. The Secretary also emphasized that increasing the region’s share in the national budget in support of the priorities and strategies outlined in the Philippine Development Plan (PDP) 2023-2028 remained among the targets and end-goals for the Dialogue.

During the first day of the dialogue, the RDC XI engaged in productive discussions on the inclusion of Davao Region’s priority PAPs with various agencies, including the Department of Agriculture (DA), Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG), Department of Science and Technology (DOST), and Department of Transportation (DOTr). Continuing on the second day, the RDC XI followed through the inclusion of PAPs by the following agencies: Department of Education (DepEd), Department of Health (DOH), Department of Human Settlements and Urban Development (DHSUD), Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT), Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH), Department of Health (DOH), and Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD).

The RDC XI was able to ensure the inclusion of thirty-three (33) Davao Region priority PAPs, with an investment target amounting to 43.53  billion pesos for FY 2025. These priority PAPs shall be included in the ACOs’ submission for the updating of the PIP 2023-2028 that will serve as input to the FY 2025 budget preparation.

At the end of the Dialogue, all the representatives from the ACOs and RDCs signed the pledge of commitment to ensure that the identified priority region-specific PAPs are duly incorporated into the updating of their PIP 2023-2028 and Annual Investment Program (AIP) for FY 2025, respectively. With the integration of the RNIP Dialogue in the annual investment programming process, the preparation of the PIP and RDIP for next year shall commence in the second quarter.

-Rod Norbert D Mondoyo,  NEDA XI