The Provincial Government of Negros Occidental will now start the development of its P5-million bamboo innovation center situated on a half-hectare lot inside the Panaad Park and Stadium in Barangay Mansilingan, Bacolod City.
Governor Alfredo Marañon Jr., who led the groundbreaking rites of the project held at the opening of the 23rd Panaad sa Negros Festival Friday, said the province, which is positioned as an investment destination promotes biodiversity and green economy thus, it is working on developing an industry that uses bamboo as major renewable material.
Marañon said the provincial government is working on developing the industry since bamboo is endemic to the province’s culture and climate.
Through the facility, more bamboo-made products will be produced and sold to both local and international markets, he added.
“We should develop this because in other places like in Indonesia, it is a big industry for construction, building, infrastructure, and decoration, among others,” Marañon added.
The Bamboo Innovation Center, which is targeted to be completed this year, is a shared service facility that will house the treatment and primary processing facilities.
Of the P5-million fund, the P1 million worth of equipment with trainings is the counterpart of the Department of Science and Technology-Negros Occidental.
The remaining P4 million is the province’s counterpart through the Performance Challenge Fund awarded by the Department of Interior and Local Government.
The fund also covers the establishment of a bamboo nursery and treatment facility beside the Negros First Rice Processing Center in Barangay Tabunan, Bago City.
“This is the start of revitalizing the bamboo industry, particularly promoting bamboo carving art in the province,” Marañon said, adding that the ingenuity and artistry of the Negrenses will also be honed.
Some of the bamboo-made products produced by Negrense entrepreneurs and artists are currently being showcased at the Trade Fair Exhibits at the ground floor of the Panaad Stadium as part of the annual festival celebration.