MINDANAO Economic Development Council (Medcoo) will turn over equipment worth P750,000 to three government agencies under its Customs, Immigration Quarantine Security (CIQS) project Thursday at the Grand Caprice Restaurant in Limketkai Center.

Undersecretary Virgilio Leyretana Sr., Medco chairperson, will lead the turnover of the equipment to the Philippine Ports Authority (PPA), the Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines, and Department of Trade and Industry (DTI).

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The PPA will receive the equipment worth P250,000 for the city’s seaport, while the Civil Aviation Authority will receive another P250,000 worth of equipment for the Lumbia airport.

The DTI, on the other hand, will receive the same amount of equipment for the Mindanao Container Terminal.

The CIQS project, funded by the Australian Agency for International Development (AusAID), aims to contribute to the improvement in the delivery of CIQS services by local agencies operating at major areas and ports having direct or indirect participation in the initiatives of the Brunei Darussalam-Indonesia-Malaysia-Philippines East Asean Growth Area (Bimp-Eaga).

Among the project’s initiatives include strengthening coordination and partnership between the Medco and CIQS agencies in Southern Philippines and with counterpart CIQS agencies in Bimp-Eaga in addressing CIQS issues and concerns.

It also aims to provide demand-driven capacity building activities for the Medco CIQS unit and CIQS agencies in Southern Philippines and facilitate the identification and stream-lining of Philippine-Eaga CIQS rules, regulations and procedures.

The project covered major points of entry such as airports, seaports and fish ports in six priority areas in Mindanao and Palawan.

These areas include the cities of Davao, General Santos, Cotabato, Zamboanga, Cagayan de Oro and Puerto Princesa.

Through AusAID, Medco and the National Economic and Development Authority, the project was able to commit around P3.75 million worth of equipment support to all six priority ports in Mindanao and Palawan to complement the learning gained by CIQS agencies from various trainings. (Terry D.C. Betonio)