Koronadal City–In its bid to spread the importance of bamboo in environmental protection and as a product for economic growth, the Provincial Government of South Cotabato reinforced its role in providing assistance to bamboo farmers through the “Kawayan Festival,” an annual gathering of experts which recognize bamboo as an investment.
Emmanuel Jumilla, Assistant Provincial Planning Coordinator, said the role of the government is to provide opportunities for the public to increase the value-added income of local products.
“We are very optimistic that the bamboo industry in the province could generate more jobs and income for the bamboo-growing communities,” Jumilla said.
Jumilla, who also heads the South Cotabato Economic, Investment and Promotions Unit, cited opportunities for farmers, and businessmen in pursuing bamboo as economic potential.
As part of the Kawayan Festival, an Investment Forum on September 18 will be conducted to discuss the demand of bamboo as a quality material for construction, furniture, restaurants, and agricultural implements, and other uses of bamboo.
The forum also invites financing institutions that would help bamboo farmers boost the bamboo enterprise.
Meanwhile, South Cotabato will turn over bamboo node cutter and splitter in a community in Lake Sebu this week as a pledge to help the local bamboo industry grow.
In South Cotabato, the towns of Lake Sebu and Tboli are top bamboo-growing communities, but the municipalities of Tupi, Polomolok, and Banga are top bamboo crafters.
Reports said delivery of “kawayan-tinik” type of bamboo pole costs P160 while bamboo “butong” type ranges from P80-P200. “Bayog” type of bamboo, on the other hand, is P100-P200 per pole but the “Afus” is the most expensive kind of bamboo among others.